Observations of an all-white humpback whale (Megaptera novaeangliae) along the Australian east coast were first made in 1991 off Byron Bay, Australia. Genetic analysis of tissue samples collected from this individual confirmed this whale to be male and lacking pigmentation as a result of albinism. While there are observations of other predominately white humpback whales, this individual is the only known true white (albino) humpback whale in the Australian east coast population. Due to his unique appearance, this individual has since become known as “Migaloo”, which is a First Nations meaning for “white fella”. In this short note we present the first extensive sighting history of Migaloo collected via scientific and citizen science efforts. This provides evidence of Migaloo’s presence in both Australian and New Zealand waters confirmed through photographic evidence and genetic testing. We also detail gaps in sighting history and highlight variability in the east Australian humpback whale population migration. The collective annual effort to document Migaloo’s presence along the Australian east coast is a unique opportunity to connect a wide community of scientists and non-scientists through whale research. It also highlights variability in whale movement geographically and the potential impact changing oceans might have on this in the future.

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