Most whale sharks are found in the southern hemisphere. Ningaloo reef is a breeding ground for whale sharks. Whale sharks swim from all around the world to Ningaloo reef every year. They do so because of Ningaloo reef provides them with excellent conditions for breeding. They find their mates and rear their young in a pod. Most whale sharks are above ten meters in length. Their size increases with age. Most mature whale sharks are twice as long as white sharks. Whale sharks have a spotted body. They have large white spots on the ventral side of their body. The lower wide of their body is white to olive in colour. It is yellowish in large individuals. You can easily spot a whale shark from a distance when swimming near Ningaloo reef. Whale sharks are easy to find because of their spots. The spots on their body are very prominent. They are dull in young individuals.
Spots on the body:
The spots of a whale shark become more prominent with age. They help them to blend in with their surroundings in Ningaloo reef. They are pale in young individuals. They are also thinner in young individuals. They lighten as the shark grows in size. Juvenile whale sharks are olive to brown in colour. Old sharks are blue in colour. There is a sharp contrast in the dorsal and ventral sides of a whale shark’s body. This makes them very easy to spot from a distance. Most Ningaloo reef whale sharks live solitary lives. Despite being gentle, they are not social creatures. A grown whale shark has no natural predators. You can easily swim side by side with a grown whale shark without facing any risks. Their gentle nature makes them tolerate humans swimmers nearby.
Finding the shark:
Whale sharks are not carnivorous, unlike other sharks. They feed on small crustaceans and plants. Their food is very abundant in Ningaloo reef. Ningaloo reef has a huge variety of fishes in it. It has other sea creatures too. Three to four hundred different species of fish live near Ningaloo reef. This makes it one of the most diverse and rich ecosystems on the planet. This also makes it very interesting for people who like to swim with whale sharks and other sea creatures.
You should take note of the necessary precautions while going for a swim. Swimming with whale sharks is safe but complications could still arise. Most whale sharks are docile. However, a shark might attack you while you are submerged in the water. Shark attacks cause many fatalities these days. They are dangerous predators with attacking instincts. Whale sharks are very different from other species of sharks in this respect.