Basking Shark: The Largest Shark of the Sea


By, Crystal S. Kauffman

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©Unknown

The basking shark is considered the second largest fish or shark, when compared to the whale shark. According to Sharks-World, this gigantic creature is also known as Cetorhinus Maximus, by scientists and researchers who collect vital information from these animals. Thankfully, they do not prefer to eat humans instead they filter feed, just as the whale shark does. They are slow moving and an unusually large mouth. In which they filter feed.
They are not dangerous to humans, because the giant shark is usually enjoying using its wide mouth to eat plankton. They have gills which filter out the items that they don’t want, while allowing them to eat all the plankton that they want. According to Sharks-World, these giant sharks can measure up to 33 feet long and the shark can weigh up to 4 tons. The most common names are the big-mouth shark, sun-fish, bone shark, and elephant shark.
The basking shark enjoys swimming and living in the coastal waters, which are warmer and offer plenty of plankton to snack on. Additionally, these giant sharks may travel alone or in groups of over 100 members, as well as travel with their mate. According to Sharks-World, they tend to stay near the surface, so they can filter feed using their mouth to process 1500 gallons of water each hour. These amazing animals are in need of protection before they become extinct and future generation will never get to see one up close.
The commercial fishing industry allows shark hunting for meat and shark liver oils, as well as other valuable parts of the shark that can be sold on the open market. According to Sharks-World, sometimes these giant sharks are mistaken for a great white shark, but the basking shark has smaller eyes and large gills. This shark’s mouth is about 3 foot wide, which allows them filter feed using the gill rakes found in the sharks gills that encircle its head.
The sharks don’t hibernate but they do migrate to deep waters or other coastal areas, during certain seasons. According to Sharks-World, these sharks vary in colors like blue, white, dark brown, and black which may identifying one a little difficult unless you know what they look like. However, In order to keep the giant sharks from being hunted, we as a generation must try to offer some type of protection now. If not, we will lose all chances of our future generations ever seeing a basking shark, except in school books or the encyclopedia.
References:

Sharks-World.com (2015) Basking Sharks

Retrieved from the World Wide Web on July 16, 2015

http://www.sharks-world.com/basking_shark/

©2015, Crystal S. Kauffman

All About Whale Sharks


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@Unknown

By, Crystal S. Kauffman

Whale sharks are a majestic beast, which fascinates scientist and tourist alike, yet many misunderstand this gentle giant. Learning more about this species of shark will help people begin to understand that the whale sharks are not dangerous. According to Shark-World, the whale shark is also known as the Rhincodon typus, which has been confirmed as a largest fish in the entire world. Scientists and tourist have chosen to go scuba diving with these majestic creatures, yet they found them to be docile and nonthreatening to humans.

According to Sharks-World, the whale shark is the largest species of shark in the world, which has been on this planet for millions of years according to scientists. The largest recorded whale shark was 40 feet in length, but some say they have seen whale sharks that are about 60 feet long. They are also known as the largest species of this on earth and can weigh over 20 tons. However, despite their massive size, they are generally known as gentle giants.

A whale sharks mouth is 4 feet wide and they are filter feeders, but their preferred meal is plankton or small fish. According to Sharks-World, the gentle giant prefers to live in warm waters like the ones found in Mexico, tropical seas, and Australia. During the spring, the whale shark migrates to the continental shelf, which is found on the West Coast of the Australian sea. This area of the Australian sea allows the whale shark to find plenty of plankton to eat and thrive on.

The gentle giant has a flattened head and a blunted snout just above its massive mouth, which has short barbels that protrude from its nostrils. According to Sharks-World, the whale sharks body is bigger that a school bus, which makes this gentle giant the biggest fish on the planet. The sharks back and sides are a dark gray to a brownish color with white spots. The gentle giants belly is white and it has two dorsal fins, which are set facing the rear of its body.

The gentle giants have a massive tail, which helps them swim when migrating or just hunting the food they crave like plankton. According to Sharks-World, these gentle giants are considered to be a threatened or vulnerable species, but they are still hunted in Asia and the Philippines. These giant sharks are docile and will allow a swimmer to interact with them, as well as hitching a ride. It is up to us and future generations to help save this majestic creature from becoming extinct.

References:

Sharks-World.com (2015) Whale Shark
Retrieved on the World Wide Web on July 16, 2015

Whale Shark

©2015, Crystal S. Kauffman

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Learning all about Orcas


Beautiful Creatures

Beautiful Creatures

Did you know that the Killer Whale or Orca is the largest species of dolphin? They have 4 inch teeth unlike any other dolphin species, which you may have seen while reading a book or in a magazine. There a three groups of pods or herds that the orcas may live in and they eat differently as well. One is called transient and another being called resident, as well as the off shore group.

What does it look like? The Killer Whale is identified by its black and white markings along with flippers on each side of the Orca, as well as a prominent dorsal fin. These majestic yet dangerous creatures are nicknamed, the cows of the sea. According to National Geographic (2012), these mammals can reach 22-32 feet long and weigh up to six tons. These mammals can live up to 40 to 60 years, but only when they are not killed due to whales and dolphin hunting.

What does it eat? These majestic mammals are predators, who hunt for marine mammals like seals or sea lions. According to National Geographic (2102), two Orcas will hit the iceberg causing it to rock back and forth. Unfortunately, this rocking motion causes it prey like a seal or sea lion to lose its footing. Then, the prey slides into the Orca’s mouth or into the water, where both whales will play with it and they slap it between each other enormous tails. The resident killer whale will main eat fish like salmon, but the transient whales will eat other animals like sharks or sea lions.

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