Belize Whale Sharks
Diving and Snorkeling with Whale Sharks
In Belize, whale sharks seasonally visit Gladden Spit, a promontory midway along the Belize Barrier Reef to feed on the spawn of aggregating snappers - the only place this has been documented and is known to occur worldwide.
Relatively slow moving animals, whale sharks are curious but docile. At Gladden Spit whale sharks will readily approach boats, snorkelers and divers if they do not feel threatened. They will often remain close to divers and snorkelers and even boats if not chased or harassed.
During the months of April through July, Belize offers divers and snorkelers the unique opportunity for spotting the large pelagic feeder known as the Whale Shark. When in a playful mood, these gentle and curious creatures will hang around for long periods of time.
If you are planning a dive trip with whale sharks in mind, the best time would be three days before the full moon to three days after the last quarter moon. It's during this period that Cubera Snappers spawn, attracting the Whale Sharks. April to June is also spawning season for many other species of fish and mating season for turtles.
Although it's possible to spot whale sharks anytime April through June, the optimum dates for Whale Shark sightings in 2007 are:
Diving and snorkeling with Whale Sharks is a uniquely Belizean experience. At Calico Jacks resort you can finally take the time to enjoy diving and and the many adventures mentioned or relax, unwind and breath the fresh air in front of your cabana, the choice is yours.
News Flash: Whale Shark Foraging Secrets Revealed
Researchers in Belize using electronic tagging on whale sharks have finally solved a marine mystery and discovered where the sharks find food. Scientists say the 65-foot-long whale sharks -- the world's largest fish -- dive nearly a mile in search of food.
The new insight into whale shark behavior is the result of research conducted at the Belize Barrier Reef, the world's second largest barrier reef system.
According to Rachel Graham (US based Wildlife Conservation Society), the associated study shows that whale sharks dive much deeper than previously believed, reaching depths of over 1,000 meters (3,300 feet) in search of food. Water that deep is only a few degrees above freezing and that explains why tropical whale sharks have an insulating layer of fat just below their skin -- a fact that has puzzled scientists for years.
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