March 13, 2012

Rare Whale Shark Spotted in Southern Ocean (3 PICS)

The Ningaloo Reef - famous for its whale sharks - has been added to the world heritage list.
Perth, Australia - A WHALE shark was sighted by a sardine fisherman off Albany on Saturday and confirmed by a police plane - thousands of kilometres from its Ningaloo Reef home.

This is the most southern record for the normally warm water species, according to WA marine biologist Brad Norman, a world recognised whale shark expert.

And it's timely - the whale shark tourism season is about to kick off at Ningaloo, with the first whale sharks sighted there this week.

In January a whale shark was seen just 200m off Floreat Beach, just north of Perth, which was then thought to be the most southern sighting. 

Mr Norman, from ECOCEAN, a not for profit conservation group, has been monitoring whale sharks in WA since 1995.  

ECOCEAN is a ‘citizen science’ project that engages members of the public to play an active role in collecting important data to help with the conservation of this threatened species.



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