Whale Sharks Research Paper

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Whale Sharks the largest fish in the world and are found throughout the warmer areas of the oceans. Whale sharks can reach to 18 – 40 feet long and weighing from 12 - 20.6 tons (Bradford A. 2016). As filter feeders, whale sharks eat mostly plankton and other small organism such as zooplankton, copepods, shrimp, phytoplankton, mollusks, and sardines. Whale sharks capture their food by swimming towards it with their mouth open which can get up to 4.9 feet wide and engulfing their prey that enters their mouth (Rafferty J. Young G. 2017). Whale sharks play important part of by clarifying water as filter feeders which is important to the marine ecosystem. Because whale sharks are a migration species these allow us to determined the overall…show more content…
Their defensive mecagnism is the growth rate growing 18 inches every year and can weigh up to 330 pounds by the age of 3. Whale sharks body is covered in denticles that are v-shaped scales that is used as protection as well as decreases drag and turbulence. Their hide being up to 4 inches thick on the sharks back that covers their muscles that lies below their scales that can be used as protection by clenching their muscles (Mancini M. 2016)
Over the past 75 year the whale shark population in the indo-pacific has reduced 63% while the Atlantic has reduced more than 30% (Pierce, S.J. & Norman, B. 2016). Overall, in the past 75 years the global whale shark’s population has declined by 50% (Pierce, S.J. & Norman B. 2016). Whale sharks are protected species in 13 of 100 countries that they visit every year and is classified as a vulnerable species (Rogers M.
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This is due to the fact the Taiwan sea is the primary breading ground for whale sharks which is located in the Indian Ocean. With the youth of whale sharks tends to say in the Indian Ocean by the Philippians and Australia. There are five primary dispersal sites of whale sharks in the Indian in additional the sites in the Pacific Ocean among Hawaii, coast of California to Chili. Each destination is primary suited for a certain age and gender of Whales sharks which the sharks will migrate too (Andrzejaczek S. et al. 2016). Though scientist do not fully understand the migration habits of whale sharks they do know that the fist will gather in massive size to specific places at times of the year. Such as in the summer time the Galapagos Islands and the Yucatan Peninsula will have and increase of whales sharks feeding off the plankton in the area (Mancini M.
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