Swimming with the Whale Sharks

Since I moved to Australia, I became aware of Whale Sharks.  A shark that filter feeds and is as harmless to a human as most whales.  Once a year they migrate up the west coast of Australia along the Ningaloo Reef.  The eco-tour companies at Coral Bay and Exmouth conduct Whale Shark Swimming Tours, which are highly regulated by the Australian Government to protect the animal.  Ever since I learned about this, I’ve been obsessed with and determined to swim with these beautiful creatures before we return to America.

In June of this year, we took a trip to WA to make my dreams come true.  We booked with Exmouth Diving Centre because they send out a plane to locate the Whale Sharks and guarantee that you will swim with one.  I am so glad we chose this company!  We had the opportunity to swim with three separate Whale Sharks on 5 different swims, with our largest sighting being 8 meters!  It was an incredible day!  Not only did we have a fantastic group of only 10 people swimming with the Whale Sharks, but we also saw 3 different types of rays, dolphins, minke whales, hump back whales, Lion’s Mane jelly fish, hard and soft coral, and fish of all types.  It was the experience of a lifetime!

Video by Katia at Exmouth Diving Centre.  Whale Sharks featured at about 7:15.

I’m going to take this opportunity to get on my vegetarian soap box for a second to call all of my fish eating friends to stop eating shark fin.  Now that you’ve seen the beauty of the whale shark in this video, you should know that he is at high risk of having his fins savagely cut off and then being thrown back into the ocean to die.  Everything other than his fins will be considered waste.  Help stop shark finning and shark extinction today simply by not eating the obvious shark fin soup, but also flake in your local fish & chip shop.  Learn more at www.stopsharkfinning.net.

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