Scientists using a remotely operated explorer nearly 2,000 feet below the Gulf of Mexico off the coast of Louisiana got a rare treat Tuesday when their ROV Hercules robot submarine encountered a playful sperm whale.

The E/V Nautilus team — which is exploring the ocean, studying biology, geology, archeology and more — said such encounters are extremely rare. “The whale circled Hercules several times and gave our cameras the chance to capture some incredible footage of this beautiful creature,” the team said in commentary posted with their video on YouTube.

See more from the Nautilus team, including live-feed video, at its website and on its Facebook page.