Whale...Shark Wednesday - Oceana USA
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August 5, 2009

Whale…Shark Wednesday

In keeping with this week’s theme, today is Whale Shark Wednesday, of course. I thought we’d take a day to step back and appreciate the biggest fish in the sea, the whale shark. Here are five things you might not know about the beautiful predators: 1. You could fit inside a whale shark’s five-foot-wide-mouth, but they wouldn’t want you in there. Whale sharks eat plankton. 2. Whale sharks have the thickest skin of any animal, at up to 4 inches thick. 3. They can live up to 100 years old and may have up to 300 young per litter. 4. A majority of whale sharks are caught for their fins before they even reach maturity. As a result, whale shark populations are decreasing in numerous regions and the average size of Australian whale sharks is shrinking. 5. Every whale shark has a unique pattern of white spots on its back, allowing scientists to identify individuals. (Plus it makes them mesmerizing to look at.)