ADOPT A WHALE SHARK

The global population of whale sharks has declined by 50% in the last 75 years, they’re now Endangered. 

Wild about whale sharks? Adopt a whale shark today and you’ll be supporting crucial whale shark research in Mozambique.

What's in the pack?

Within 24hrs of adopting a whale shark, you will receive a digital adoption pack. Each pack includes: 

  • A personalised certificate of adoption
  • An info sheet on your adopted whale shark
  • A fact pack
  • A mindfulness whale shark colouring sheet
  • A digital whale shark poster

About whale sharks

Whale sharks are the biggest fish in the sea, the largest reaching as much as 20m long and weighing 42t! Despite their size, they are gentle, plankton feeding giants. Plankton are among the smallest organisms in the sea, and whale sharks feed on them by filtering the water and everything in it’s path.

Whale sharks prefer warmer waters and the nutrient rich currents on our coastline make Mozambique an optimal home for some. However, populations of these amazing animals are declining globally, and have declined as far as 63% in the indo-pacific. This has led to them being listed as Endangered on the IUCN Red List which means that the species faces a very high risk of extinction in the wild. We need your help to protect them! 

Whale sharks are famous for the beautiful white spots that cover their bodies. These spot patterns can also be used to identify individuals – like humans with our fingerprints! This information allows us to track migration patterns, study population trends, and help conserve these magnificent animals.

 

Threats

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Biological resource use

One of the biggest threats to whale sharks are fisheries and bycatch. Whale sharks are often targeted for their fins which are sold on the black market. These animals can also get caught accidentally in tuna fishing equipment.

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Human intrusions and disturbance

Inappropriate tourism may be an indirect threat to whale sharks. This can include interference, crowding, or provisioning which can lead to changes in behaviour and negatively affect the health of the shark.

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Transportation and service corridors

Vessel strikes are a common threat to whale sharks. If a boat goes too close to an animal or drives over it the propellors and the boat can cause damage. Whale sharks often feed at the surface and they are therefore susceptible to these strikes. 

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Energy production and mining

Marine pollution events in whale shark hotspots can cause mortality or displacement from preferred habitats. This combined with the increasing worry of climate change and it’s impacts are growing areas of whale shark research. 

How are we helping?

Love The Oceans has already developed and rolled out responsible tourism guidelines to protect these animals in our region and we work with the local fishermen to ensure none are caught in fisheries. Proving the presence of these animals in this region provides a financial incentive, through ecotourism, to establish the region as a Marine Protrected Area; providing protection for not only whale sharks, but a multitude of other animals and habitats crucial to this area.

Your adoption and support will help us: 

  • Support ongoing whale shark research
  • Promote sustainable fishing practises
  • Reduce illegal fishing
  • Promote sustainable and responsible whale shark tourism
  • Create a Marine Protected Area
  • Help the local community manage and conserve their marine resources
  • Strengthen law enforcement to stop illegal trade in whale shark fins
  • Teach the next generation about marine conservation

Choose your whale shark

Nemo

MZ-LTO-001 Sex: Male

This male was first sighted in December 2010 in Mozambique and has been sighted both in Tofo and further south from our research base. Because Nemo is a smaller shark, he doesn't like as many people in the water with him and doesn't hang around to swim with humans.

Munchkin

MZ-LTO-002 Sex: Male

This small male was first spotted in November 2011 and has been sighted in the coastal waters of Tofo, north of our base, as well as right on our doorstep! Munchkin has been spotted feeding numerous times, hence his name.

Wolfgang

MZ-LTO-003 Sex: Unknown

Wolfgang was spotted at Island Rock, further south from our research base, on 10th August 2018. We don't know which sex Wolfgang is yet, and so far there are no matches in the database. Wolfgang was travelling when they were spotted, hanging out with a few Prodigal Son fish.

Anton

MZ-LTO-004 Sex: Unknown

Anton was first spotted 12th September 2014 by our Founder, and was one of the first ever whale sharks recorded by LTO! We're not sure of Anton's sex yet but when sighted he seemed to be going places, travelling quite fast!

Chica

MZ-LTO-005 Sex: Unknown

Named for our amazing, whale-shark-spotting skipper by 2 of our volunteers, Chica is 6m in size. Chica hasn't been matched with any previous records yet, and was first spotted swimming very slowly in Guinjata, by our research base, having a rest.

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Love The Oceans Conservation charity number 1184402 
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