When you mention the word “Shark”, it puts the fear of God in people’s mind instantaneously. Is it really fair to give “Jaws” bad reputation to all shark species? Well, the answer is: “No!” In fact, the Whale shark is a good example of a shark species that is totally undeserving of such a bad reputation.

Of the 350 to 375 shark species that swim in our oceans, seas and even in some of our rivers, the Whale shark is amongst the 80% of sharks that do not represent any danger to humans.

Despite the fact that the Whale shark is of considerable size with its length reaching up to 60 feet, it is also known as a gentle giant as it is mainly feeding on krill, shrimps, fish eggs, plankton, and small fish.

As you can see, humans are not amongst their feeding habits. The only recorded shark attack done by a whale shark was provoked and not fatal. Injuries related to this shark special happened while swimming too close to the tail or fins and were accidental. Any experienced diver would stay at least ten feet away from this powerful creature. From a safe distance, these giants of the sea are known as docile and inoffensive.

The Whale shark is known to live in nine areas of the world and Gladden spit is one of them. It is located in the Caribbean, near Belize City. Besides the fact that this area is also home to the largest coral reef in the Western Hemisphere, Whale sharks have been known to live in this area.

One of the main factors responsible for attracting this shark species is the spawning of 10,000 groupers following the full moon. The eggs surfacing represent the tasty caviar enjoyed by Whale sharks.

The Whale shark’s powerful presence does not only attract divers and scientists but also an impressive number of tourists. In Thailand, ecotourism based on observing and watching Whale sharks in their natural habitat is an important and lucrative part of the tourism industry.

Watching Whale sharks has also encouraged several conservationist groups to promote laws to protect this endangered species.

The Whale shark may be amongst the less known shark species but scientists are working hard on learning more about these gentle creatures and sharing their knowledge with the rest of the world.