From a blog originating in the similan islands, I find out about a research opportunity — a Whale Shark Research Project.
This would appear to be a unique experience that supports eco-tourism and combines the opportunity to search for, identify and track Whale Sharks in Thailand ’s Andaman Sea.
There is little known about this magnificent fish and even less known about their mating habits, migration patterns and the actual living population. The objective of the Whale Shark Exploration Program is to help save this precious species and raise awareness by educating all participants about the Whale Shark in particular, by locating and observing them while identifying and taking pictures of the spot pattern on their skin. We will also see and learn about all of the local marine life indigenous to the premier dive locations in the Andaman Sea.
Graceful, rare and mesmerizing, the Whale Shark can grow up to 12.2 meters long (although some 14m sightings have been reported), weigh upwards of 13.6 tonnes, and can live for about 70 years. The most elusive and largest fish in the sea is found in warm tropical waters and it is believed to have originated 60 million years ago. Currently listed as a vulnerable species by The International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), the Whale Shark is frequently targeted by commercial fisheries in many regions.
You can read more at the link below. Let me know if you have ever encountered a Whale Shark – whether in the wild or even in an aquarium. These amazing creatures fascinate me.