Whale sharks are found in marine environments worldwide but mainly in tropical oceans. Unlike whales, sharks are not mammals but belong to a group of cartilaginous fishes. The whale shark has a very wide distribution, found in all tropical and warm temperate seas, except in the Mediterranean. Most species of shark on the other hand aren’t known to care for their young and do not nurture their children. The whale shark received its name due to its large size as some whale sharks are as large as several of the whale species. When it comes to reproduction and nurture there is a significant difference in how the two types of marine animals are raised. Sadly the meat is often discarded. On the top and sides of its body, the whale shark is a greyish color, with a series of whitish – yellow spots and stripes that give it its distinctive checkerboard-like appearance. These marine mammals give birth to a single offspring once every several years and nurse their child with milk until it can hunt for food on its own. • Whales have lungs sharks … The whale shark holds many records for size in the animal kingdom, most notably being by far the largest living nonmammalian vertebrate. In the Atlantic Ocean, its territory ranges from the northeastern coast of the United States all the way to central Brazil, across to Senegal in Africa and down to the Gulf of Guinea near Cameroon. In fact the whale shark is the largest fish (or shark for that matter) in the world. They are however very untypical of the shark species as they have a flattened head with a mouth at the front, rather than the underside. It is the largest shark in the world. The other sharks that are filter feeders include the basking shark, and the megamouth shark. Another major difference between whales and sharks is how the two species give birth. Overview — Incomprehensively enormous, the whale shark is the world’s largest fish. Killer Whale. Whale Sharks have a huge mouth that can be up to 1.5m wide. These gentle marine giants roam the oceans around the globe, generally alone. Surprisingly despite its large size it survives on a diet of plankton, krill, shrimp, larvae, algae and other small aquatic life forms, which is very different from other shark species that have large teeth and hunt large fish and/or marine mammals. This is a whale shark coloring sheet. The whale shark (Rhincodon typus), is a filter feeding shark. The whale shark is known as the largest living shark. Whale sharks belong to a group of fish known as cartilaginous fish. Their streamlined bodies help minimize water drag while making swimming as energy efficient as possible. Although they are sharks, they are as large as many species of whales. Whale Sharks usually grow bigger than Basking Sharks. Sharks on the other hand breathe through their gills which they use to extract oxygen directly from the water. Before 198… They are the largest shark, and also the largest fish in the ocean. A shark liver accounts for more than five per cent of its total body weight and is known for being oil-rich with an energy store more nutritious than that of whale blubber. Again this is very different from species such as the great white shark which grabs its prey using its teeth and viciously shakes its head left and right to tear the flesh off of their food. Although the whale shark is a massive animal luckily its throat isn’t nearly large enough to swallow a human or another marine mammal, so there is little to fear when swimming next to these large sharks. Whales have blubber (since whales are warm-blooded they need blubber to keep their vital organs warm when they are in cold environments. They average 40 feet in length, but the largest can reach 60 or more. Depending on the species whales have been recorded holding their breath anywhere from 5 minutes to 90 minutes before having to swim back to the surface for oxygen. The massive mammal, named Trixie, was one of the first whale sharks that arrived at … The whale shark is the biggest fish and shark in the world. Login to . This style of swimming may also be considered more energy efficient for sharks and works well with their physical design. When it comes to swimming whales are designed to swim by arching their spines and lifting their horizontal flukes up and down to create propulsion. Parents and Teachers: While MrNussbaum.com and its 10,000+ activities are always free, if you wish to subscribe to MrN 365, enter the coupon code "november" to receive 50 percent off the normal price through November. In fact most marine biologists and specialists state that the whale shark isn’t considered a threat to humans and in some cases is even playful with divers, however despite this marine specialists warm people not to become too physical or aggressive with them and people should not approach these sharks for any reason as their nature is not always predictable. Whale sharks are the largest fish on the planet; the average whale shark is between 18 and 40 feet … Some species of shark however are viviparous and share a link to their young that appears similar to the placental type of link that is commonly shared among mammals. Look for the dots. No one has ever been able to weigh this huge, yet majestic, shark. Whale shark, (Rhincodon typus), gigantic but harmless shark (family Rhincodontidae) that is the largest living fish. As stated previously there are a number of differences between the two animals. 4 years ago. They also happen to be filter feeders just like the baleen whale species, however their filter feeding method is a bit different than a whales. This is especially important for species that live far beneath the ocean as some of these animals will spend their entire lives underwater and never experience an environment above the surface of the water. There are currently over 400 known species of shark that have been recorded throughout the world (not including fish species) and … Have blowhole(s) (whales must come to the surface to breathe and can drown underwater), Whales swim by moving their tails up and down (the spine of whales appears to be designed for walking/running rather than swimming, so they move their back/flukes up and down to swim), Some whales are equipped with echolocation. Able to grow up to 60 n/m (18.0987965463725 cm) and weigh up to 70,000 tons. Sharks have serrated teeth for hunting (sharks are known for having serrated teeth which they use to bite their prey and tear the flesh off it). The whale shark (Rhinodon typus) earns the name “whale” solely because of its size. They're filter feeders — like some whales of the mammal variety — swimming along with their mouths open, scooping up plankton and very small fishy members of the neighborhood. These marine animals are more focused on producing lot’s of offspring (some sharks can lay thousands of eggs in a single year) rather than caring for an individual baby shark, while whales produce one offspring every 2 – 6 years so it is important for them to nurture their young and make sure they grow up healthy. This shark has a flat head and a wide mouth which can reach nearly 5 ft. in length! It is the sole member of the genus Rhincodon and the only extant member of the family Rhincodontidae, which belongs to the subclass Elasmobranchii in the class Chondrichthyes. It is part of our Sharks Coloring series. In addition to this a whale shark can give birth to hundreds off offspring in a given cycle and the eggs may hatch all year long while numerous whale species have a separate mating season and feeding season with a 10 – 17 month pregnancy period. For instance whale are warm-blooded so they have a thick layer of insulated blubber to help keep their body and vital organs warm. In fact sharks are actually considered a type of fish while whales, dolphins and porpoises are marine mammals. The whale shark looks ominous but is actually gentle, eating plankton and small fish in the water and filtering it through its tiny teeth and quarter-size throat. Whales on the other hand can vary in size from 9 ft. (the dwarf sperm whale) to over 98 ft. ( the blue whale) in length and weight in excess of 150 tons. In fact the whale shark is the largest fish (or shark for that matter) in the world. Although both animals live and thrive in the ocean and there is a species of shark that is called the whale shark the whale species is very different from sharks. These filter feeders are massive, harmless creatures that are endangered by human activity. Just as the blue whale (Balaenoptera musculus) is the largest living mammal*, the whale shark is the largest species of any fish, known to reach more than 40 feet in length. Whales swim by moving their spine and tail up and down which is believed to the result of their mammalian past. Whale sharks on the other hand are cold-blooded so they do not need a thick layer of blubber or body fat to stay warm and their bodies can adjust to the changes in the oceans climate as it gets warmer or colder. In fact sharks are actually considered a type of fish while whales, dolphins and porpoises are marine mammals. Despite carrying their eggs internally sharks do not produce milk to feed their young the way whales do and their emotional maternal bond with their children (if the shark has any) is often significantly less substantial than that of a female whale and her calf. Read on to learn about the whale shark. Disclosure Policy | Privacy Policy | Copyright © 2020 WhaleFacts.org, Cold-blooded (most shark and fish species are cold blooded animals), Lay eggs (sharks are known to be able to lay up to 100 eggs during a single reproductive cycle while fish can lay several thousand eggs in a single year), Have gills (sharks use to gills to breathe underwater, but can suffocate above the water as they are not designed to live above the surface), Sharks swim from left to right (the sharks body is streamlined and well designed for swimming underwater), Smaller average size compared to whales (sharks are typically smaller than whales likely burn significantly fewer calories due to being small and cold-blooded), Sharks can replace their teeth dozens of times of the course of a lifetime. Size: Female Killer Whales can reach up to 23 feet in length and weigh up to 6,000 … Unlike Basking Sharks, Whale Sharks don’t depend on forward movement to feed, and can also suck in their food by opening their huge mouth. As a species sharks/fish are largely cold-blooded, lay eggs (most species lay eggs externally, while a few keep their eggs internal), extract oxygen from the water through their gills and do not nurse their young (depending on the species most fish/sharks either fend for themselves at birth or carry a sack full of nutrients until they can hunt on their own). Species description whale shark cs 2014 some like it hot: repeat migration and residency of sharks within an extreme natural environment infographic pdf document wallpapers for android apk download powerpoint presentation hk foundation The Georgia Aquarium’s largest female whale shark died Friday. Whale sharks on the other hand swim by moving their bodies from left to right and use their vertical fins to push themselves forward through the water and pass water over their gills. Whale shark deaths due to human activity are caused mainly by collisions with boats and by fishing. The whale shark is a giant of the oceans: the dimensions of its body gives it the title of the largest fish in the world and therefore, also the biggest shark.It is the only member of the genus Rhincodon. In addition, they are filter feeders, much like many species of whales known as baleen whales. Whales give birth the same way that humans and other mammals do (through a pregnancy period or gestation term) while sharks and fish lay eggs. Whale sharks are most definitely sharks. Whale sharks are the biggest fish in the sea. No whale sharks are not mammals they are the largest fish in the oceans. They make up the only species of the genus Rhincodon and are classified within the order Orectolobiformes, a group containing the carpet sharks. Whales are marine mammals and belong to the cetacean family which is made up of all species of whale, dolphin and porpoise. The reason a whale shark includes “whale” in its name is purely because of its immense size. • Sharks have a cartilaginous skeleton, but it is a bony skeleton in whales. It's thought that less than 10% of whale sharks born survive to adulthood, but … Most species of whale on the other hand have a lifespan of between 30 – 70 years, however there are a few species such as humpback whale, fin whale and bowhead whale that are known to live until 100 – 200 years. Breathing is also very different between whales and sharks. They’re one of only three filter-feeding sharks - the others being the Megamouth and Basking Shark. Although both animals live and thrive in the ocean and there is a species of shark that is called the whale shark the whale species is very different from sharks. They typically live in the tropical oceans and are rarely seen in water with a temperature below 70°F (21°C). These slow moving creatures are gentle giants, and are only dangerous to small fish and plankton. It belongs to the order Orectolobiformes and the family Rhincodontidae. Estimates suggest the largest whale sharks weigh over 13 tons. It grows up to 12 metres long, and may weigh as much as 47,000 pounds. In regards to the whale shark in particular these animals carry their eggs on them and a female can carry up to 300 eggs in a given cycle. Another notable difference between the two species has to do with the way they swim. If you include dolphins than their sizes can range from 5 ft. (Maui’s dolphin) to over 30 ft. (the killer whale). Whale sharks are one of the most beautiful and magnificent creatures on the planet. In regards to the differences between sharks (which are fish) and whales (which are marine mammals) there are a number of physiological differences among the two distinct species. So despite being sharks, they have more in common with the mammals after which they were named than just size. Sharks however swim by moving their body and tail from left to right, kind of like a snake. Their astounding size, whale shark is both the largest shark species and the largest fish species alive today, and their coloring makes whale sharks very easy to identify. The whale shark lives in warm ocean waters throughout the world, except for the Mediterranean Sea. level 2. There are currently over 400 known species of shark that have been recorded throughout the world (not including fish species) and around 80 – 90 known species of cetacea (cetaceans include whales, dolphins and porpoises). Whale sharks are … A whale shark is a shark, it is not a whale despite having the word “whale” in its name. 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