While there is no concrete figure for the global whale shark population, they are classified as endangered by the IUCN and their numbers are believed to be decreasing. They are primarily impacted by fisheries where they often end up as bycatch. Areas of high boat traffic, such as shipping lanes, also pose a significant threat to whale shark, as they are fairly slow moving and can easily collide with vessels. Thankfully, the whale shark is protected under a number of international agreements in regards to preserving marine species.
- Recommended Age: 3+
- Size in cm: 18.5 L x 9 W x 5.75 H
- Size in inches: 7.28 L x 3.54 W x 2.26 H
- UPC: 095866422103
The whale shark is listed as Vulnerable due to its declining numbers. The species is mainly threatened by unregulated fisheries, which capture whale sharks for their meat. Conservation efforts include developing ecotourism that allows people to see whale sharks in their natural habitat and enforcing stricter fishing regulations.