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Are the whale sharks in any way badly treated?

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Are the whale sharks in any way badly treated?

This might be a weird question, but I'd like to know. So, here is the thing....I have seen some photos of people snorkeling around whale sharks in the Philippines.

Is there anything else they do to them so that they would appear there, or touch them and so on? Or is it just a completely natural thing to do?

Cheers

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philippines
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for Cebu City, Philippines, Cebu Island
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1. Re: Are the whale sharks in any way badly treated?

you are not allowed to touch. they can swim very close to you that there is the "unintentional" touch. last 4th week of december, someone i brought there deliberately extended his hand when the fish swam very near, and when the boatman swimming with us to take pictures saw him, he got a strong dress down.

The fish is free to swim. Every morning they return, when they are satiated, or if it is past 12 and feeding stops, they leave.

philippines
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2. Re: Are the whale sharks in any way badly treated?

you can see the feeder occasionally touch the fish because the fish follows the feeder up and down the line of boats, if that bothers the observer. there are scars on the fish which critics say is because the fish are now used to human presence. however, a lot of 100% wild fish has some degree of scars as they have to contend to wildlife conditions.

melbourne
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3. Re: Are the whale sharks in any way badly treated?

The whalesharks follow a natural migration around many locations in the Philipines. It is completely natural for them to be there.

In the past they were hunted for food, but now that is illegal.

In Oslob they hand feed the whalesharks. In other places in the Philippines that does not happen

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Oslob
Oslob
Cebu Island, Philippines
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4. Re: Are the whale sharks in any way badly treated?

The problem is oslob - where they are hand fed so they stay all year - rather than migrate as is their natural behaviour.

philippines
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5. Re: Are the whale sharks in any way badly treated?

https://www.tripadvisor.com/ShowTopic-g32261…

a thread that got hijacked starting post 4 by same.above person and the discussion was self explanatory.

Pomeroy, Washington
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6. Re: Are the whale sharks in any way badly treated?

Don't let the idealists fool you. While the whale shark encounter is not perfect, it's doing more good than harm. Filipinos now have a good reason to protect the sharks. They are now more valuable as a tourist attraction vs. a dinner item.

Melbourne, Australia
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7. Re: Are the whale sharks in any way badly treated?

Idealists, or Do Gooders whatever you want to call them.

From my understanding what whip5209 says is how it is.

Its not really a travel forum matter. Its not a matter we have power over. If it bothers your conscience just don't visit. I certainly intend to visit later this year.

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8. Re: Are the whale sharks in any way badly treated?

al22tecc, I cant open that link.

Anyways....I appreciate all your comments. I understand that it is better to be protected than being served on a plate, but do all these sharks stay and stop following their migration paths because of the feeding?

I apologize if anyone think this is not a tripadvisor matter or topic, but I'd like to know (and hear your opinion).

Cheers

philippines
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9. Re: Are the whale sharks in any way badly treated?

in that link, the discussion got diverted. but i did mention there that the scientists were able to attach microchips to the fish which they wouldnt be able to if they had to chase the fish in the wild. the recovered chip and the downloaded data showed the fish travelled to bohol, the island next door, to donsol, which is still far, and as far as taiwan.

They are free to roam, they are not caged and forced to stay. From old articles, the sharks were always in oslob long before it became a tourist spot.

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10. Re: Are the whale sharks in any way badly treated?

I'll be visiting the whale sharks when I'm in Moalboal at end May. To me personally, as long as the whale sharks aren't kept in captivity or mistreated, I don't see any reason to forgo this activity. And the bonus being you get a guaranteed encounter with the whale sharks.

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Moalboal
Moalboal
Cebu Island, Philippines
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