The Thornlie resident decided to enter the picture in the Nature Conservancy�s 2015 photo competition and was a highly commended winner of the Wildlife Category
Mr Ashley, who is a postie by day, said he was on his first whale watching trip with his family when he took the lucky snap.
He had a 500mm telephoto lens attached to the camera but the initial whales he saw were too far out, so he decided to change to the smaller lens.
While heading back to shore, the skipper of the boat they were in saw an object and thought it was an upturned dinghy.
But on closer inspection it turned out to be a whale that he though was dead.
�We were all sad as our boat pulled alongside and we all looked at the huge carcass when suddenly to the delight of everyone on board, there was a spout of water and the whale dived below the surface,� he recalled.
�Within a minute, this magnificent creature leapt from the water in this spectacular breach no more than 50 metres from our vessel.
�If I hadn�t changed lenses, I would not have got the shot, so luck played a part and the fact that the whale was merely resting was a great relief.�
Mr Ashley spends a lot of his spare time taking photos and has had his work featured in many publications, including the Australian Travel Magazine.
�I have a love and fascination for nature,� he said.
To see more of Mr Ashley�s photos, visit davidashleyphotos.com