Tracking a Whale Shark in the Indian Ocean

WhaleShark GPS Track in Google EarthA team of students from the German Europen School Singapore GPS tagged a whale shark in August. They are using Google Earth to show the track of this gentle 7 meter long creature which they named “Schroeder”. Whale Sharks are more whale than shark by most common perceptions. Their primary food is plankton which is why they have very large mouths so they can swim and capture large quantities of these small bits of food.
Download Schroeder’s track . You can see from the track that Schroeder has moved about 700 KM in the last month from the Seychelles (where they tagged him) towards the continent of Africa. This is an interesting application of Google Earth to visualize the track of a wild animal through the oceans. I expect other marine scientists who are tracking whales, turtles, dolphins, and many other sea creatures will begin to follow this excellent example for using our favorite tool. The students have created an english version of their site which you can find here. Their post at the GE Community can be found here.
By the way, I found a link on their web site to a story that Whale Sharks are getting smaller due to overfishing. Definitely worth a read since overfishing is a serious concern affecting sea life around the world.

About Frank Taylor

Frank Taylor started the Google Earth Blog in July, 2005 shortly after Google Earth was released. He worked in 3D graphics for many years and was very impressed with this exciting product. Frank left in 2009 to circumnavigate the earth by sailboat as part of the Tahina Expedition.



Comments

  1. Dear Sir/Madam,
    May I ask which particular combination of was used? GPS tag and receiver?
    Yours faithfully,
    Dr. David Shi

  2. What is the average number of spots on a whale shark?& What does a whale shark do all day?

  3. What could you do to help whale sharks, is there a donation center to help this species? If not we should start one for them.

  4. I was wondering if there was a way I could monitor whales. like their location and diet for a science project. thanx!
    -fiona

  5. This just made my day that much brighter. Thanks a million. Something else I stumbled across was this http://www.whales.org.za . Take a look! Keep up the great work!

  6. Whale shark’s like most sharks specie’s are been driven to the point of extinction by over fishing, mostly for their fins. This is going to have a serious effects on the oceans ecosystem which is already starting to happen.

  7. Thomas Minder says:

    Hello
    I swam with whale sharks in Yucatan Mexico near Isla Mujeres about 20 km outside of the iland Contoy. There where more than 100 wahle sharks.
    One of them was number 807 who had a GPS sender.
    Can you tell me on which website 807 can be tracked?

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