AN extremely rare albino humpback whale has made a welcome return to the waters off far north Queensland.
The whale, dubbed Migaloo by locals, and his calf are the only two known albino humpbacks in the world.
They were spotted off the tourist haven of Port Douglas, north of Cairns, yesterday.
Tourism Port Douglas CEO Doug Ryan says Migaloo has a big fan base.
"We use the word a lot but he's become an icon,'' Mr Ryan told ABC Radio.
"He's certainly a favourite with everyone and even though not everyone gets to see him it signifies a time of year.''
Mr Ryan said generally whale sightings near the town were becoming increasingly common.
"Last year we had a mother and calf just off the entrance to Port Douglas,'' he said.