Whale sharks are the largest species of fish on the planet, but by 1985, there only 320 records worldwide. Since that time, humans have become fascinated by these massive filter feeders leading to a global tourism industry valued at over $50 million annually. In parts of the Philippines, where whale sharks were previously hunted, whale shark tourism has provided a significant source of income for over a decade. In late 2011, whale shark tourism expanded to the town of Oslob on the island of Cebu where local fishermen had been feeding sharks part of their daily shrimp catch. However, human feeding of whale sharks and the rapidly expanding tourism associated with it could be having negative impacts on this highly migratory species.
Josh Silberg was the project coordinator for two years with the non-profit Physalus on their Large Marine Vertebrate Project Philippines (LAMAVE) studying whales, dolphins, sea turtles and whale sharks. He is currently a Master's student in Resource and Environmental Management in Dr. Anne Salomon's lab at Simon Fraser University.
** Note: This is a change of speaker and topic from the listing in The Naturalist **
|NV Silberg - Whale Shark Poster.pdf||926.51 KB|