A swim with the Whale Sharks.
Trip Start Sep 21, 2006
101Trip End Ongoing
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It's the largest fish in the world. It can reach up to 18 m long (60 ft) and weigh up to 21 tonnes. Some whales can grow bigger but they are mammals, not fish. Very little is known about the Whale Shark as scientists only started studying them about 13 years ago. Their white spot pattern is unique to each individual which facilitates identification. About 1400 Whale Sharks have been identified so far. No one really knows how many there are in the sea and how long they live
Swimming along side those gentle giants is an experience one can never ever forget. Especially the first one you see as they generally swim directly towards you. I boarded a boat specialized in this kind of experience and we also had a spotter plane that was flying over the open ocean behind Ningaloo Reef. It took a couple hours before the plane spotted a shark and radioed in its position. We rushed to that location and then the moment finally came. I jumped off the boat, swam for a couple minutes in the direction I was instructed and there it was, a 8 meter (25 ft) Whale Shark coming straight at me with its one meter mouth wide open. It's an unbelievable feeling. They are harmless to humans as they feed on plankton and small fish but you must keep your distance as one hit from its tail could easily break every bone is your body.
Diving with the largest fish in the world is one of those "must do before you die" experiences. Absolutely amazing.