As the largest shark and fish species of the world, the whale shark is a highly migratory species, travelling distances of up to 2000 km. in two months. It travels throughout the world’s tropical temperate seas and therefore shows little genetic variation on a global scale. Little is known about the life history and reproduction of the species, but incidental records and data from animals in captivity suggest that whale sharks are highly fecund viviparous species that grow up to approximately 15 meters in length. They feed on small marine organisms, such as plankton, small crustaceans, and even small tuna’s by filtering the water through suction filter feeding.
According to results of a recent study, the abundance of whale sharks in the Dutch Caribbean is higher in the southern, leeward part of the islands, which is likely associated with seasonal upwelling-driven productivity known for the southeastern Caribbean area.