Rescuers free humpback whale calf from netting at Sydney beach as nervous mum watches

A humpback whale calf tangled in shark netting in waters off Sydney's northern beaches has been freed by rescuers.

A spokesman for National Parks and Wildlife Services Whale Disentanglement crew congratulated rescuers and said the whale was expected to continue its journey south.

The calf was first reported to authorities earlier this week after it was spotted off beaches in northern NSW, but rescuers had lost sight of the animal.

ORRCA spokeswoman Jacqueline O'Neill today said the tired and distressed calf, which has been swimming south alongside its mother, was spotted again overnight in waters off Sydney.

The calf appeared to have swallowed part of the net, which had then wrapped around its body.