International Whale Shark Day is August 30 and celebrates the incredibleness of whale sharks. This huge shark is the largest species of shark on the planet. It can grow up to 60 feet in length from its birth. Whale sharks are known for their gentle and slow behavior.
Although it prefers to swim at shallow depths, the whale shark can also be found in deep waters up to 3,000 feet. Whale sharks are easy to catch because of these factors. They have been used for their fins and meat.
Whale sharks have seen a minimum of a 50% drop in their population due to the whale shark market. This alarming situation has led to the listing of the giant on the endangered species list. Due to large amounts of plankton that are a primary food source for whale sharks, the marine environment is also in danger.
HISTORY OF THE INTERNATIONAL WHALE SHARK-DAY
In 2008, International Whale Shark Day was established at the International Whale Shark Conference (Isla Holbox). There were 40 scientists, activists, and ocean experts who attended the conference, all concerned about the declining population of whale sharks.
Although sharks have existed for over 240-260 million years, the first time the whale shark was discovered off South Africa’s coast was in the 1820s. Dr. Andrew Smith correctly described the whale shark as the biggest known shark on Earth. The whale shark’s enormous size and their ability to be more aggressive than their smaller cousins make them seem gentle.
They are only 16-24 inches at birth. However, as they grow, they can reach 46-60 feet. Their 300 rows of 3,000 teeth are only 0.2 inches in length. Whale sharks weigh in at 12 tons and are filter-feeders. They eat planktons, squids, fish, and other small animals. They are also large and can eat up to 44 lbs per day.
These magnificent giants, which also have distinctive patterns of dots and lines on the skin, can be hard to find. Although they have been around since the Jurrasic or Cretaceous period, it is believed that there were only 350 sightings before 1980. This is despite the fact that the scientific community has known about the whale shark for more than 100 years. These sharks can swim in shallow waters. Whale sharks migrate every spring to the Western continental shelf of Australia.
The area’s Ningaloo Reef is home to a large amount of plankton-rich coral. In recent years, however, the whale shark was placed on the endangered species list. They are hunted continuously for their meat, fins, and pure enjoyment.
Whale shark trading is still being carried out in parts of Asia, such as the Philippines. The whale shark trade will continue if the whale sharks cannot be saved. This will also impact our oceans. Too many planktons can promote algal growth, which in turn can have negative effects on other fish species, our environment, and us humans.
TIMELINE FOR INTERNATIONAL WHALE SHARK DATE
Discovered Shark Fossils 450 Million Years Ago
A few shark scales have been found in fossils from the Late Ordovician Period.
1868Large whale sharks in Seychelles
Edward Perceval Wright reported that he has observed and studied many whale sharks, reaching lengths between 46 and 75 feet.
1994-1996Satellite tracking for whale sharks
Scott Eckert, Brent Stewart, and satellite tracking are used to study closely the growth and living patterns of whale sharks.
21st Century Uncertain Future
Human activities are threatening to wipe out sharks, which have more than 400 species and have survived five major extinction events.
INTERNATIONAL WHALE SHARK TIME FAQS
Why is International Whale Shark Day celebrated?
International Whale Shark Day is celebrated because it raises awareness about endangered fishes and their importance to the marine environment.
Is the whale shark threatened by climate change in 2021?
Yes, the International Union for Conservation of Nature has listed whale sharks as an endangered species on its 2021 list.
Is there a World Shark Day
Every year, July 14th is Shark Awareness Day.
HOW TO OBSERVE INTERNATIONAL WALK SHARK DAY
- Reduce your plastic use plastic pollution is one of the greatest enemies of whale sharks and all marine creatures. Plastic pollution is a threat to whale sharks and other marine creatures. Plastic will make the whale shark sick and not allow it to eat any other food. Reduce or eliminate plastic use to save whale sharks.
- Learn more about whale sharks sharks are fascinating sea creatures. The whale shark species is a remarkable fish to learn more about. Whale sharks, unlike their smaller cousins in size, are gentler and more patient than their smaller counterparts. They are known to be docile and can carry people on their backs, taking them along for the ride.
- Whale shark day whale shark merchandise can be purchased, you can eat/drink whale shark-themed food and your social media pictures will change to include a whale shark. These celebratory activities will increase awareness of the endangered species.
5 FACTS ABOUT WHALE SHARKS THAT WILL BLOW YO MIND
- They are not related to whales despite having the name “whale” in them, their only reason for being called whale sharks is their enormous size.
- It is difficult to feed your family. Whale sharks don’t have sharp or long teeth. This is why they can only swallow whole food (shrimps and fish)
- Very long lives Whale sharks can live to 150 years if they are healthy and not killed.
- Slow swimmers Whale sharks can swim at a slow speed and are not fast swimmers. Their maximum speed is 3.1 miles an hour.
- Don’t stay with them young Whale sharks are not like whales and do not live with their younglings after they give birth.
WHY INTERNATIONAL WAALE SHARK DAY IS OUR FAVOURITE DAY
- It’s a celebration for whale sharks Whale sharks are one of the most gentle creatures in nature. Whale sharks are gentle giants, from their feeding and swimming habits to their stunning patterns. We wouldn’t mind swimming alongside this shark.
- It is a celebration of a long and rich history Our planet has seen many extinctions, but it has also witnessed the birth of many new species. One example of such a creature is the whale shark. If we dive deep into the evolution of whale Sharks, we can learn much about the planet’s past.
- It’s a celebration of ecosystems Whale sharks, like many other living creatures on Earth, contribute their part to keeping the planet going. Our oceans would be overpopulated with plankton if whale sharks weren’t around. This would cause algal growth which is very harmful to all sea creatures. This will have a negative impact on the long-term health of humans as well.