When you think of Galapagos wildlife, tortoises and iguanas and blue-footed boobies may pop to mind. But there’s another species in Galapagos waters that’s far bigger in size and intrigue... The whale shark is the world’s biggest shark—and the world’s biggest fish! But its name is misleading, as it’s not a whale at all. It’s just comparable in size to whales, up to 65 feet long and weighing 25 tons! Yet this gentle giant eats the tiniest creatures in the sea, filter-feeding on zooplankton, coral eggs and fish larvae. Galapagos Expedition Leader Josy Cardoso and Sofia Green, a researcher at the Galapagos Whale Shark Project, share what we know about these mysterious prehistoric creatures...and many things we don’t know. For instance, why do they congregate only around Wolf and Darwin Islands and nowhere else in the archipelago? Why is the local population almost entirely female? And while most of the females appear to be pregnant, why don’t we see newborns? Where do they go to give birth? You’re certain to find these polka-dotted megafish as fascinating as the researchers do.
Originally presented November 24, 2020
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