Encounter with a whale shark
For some divers it’s a life-changing experience at Richelieu rock. A dark shadow in the blue is coming closer: what is it? Then the contour get’s clearer and you’re standing eye to eye with the biggest fish on earth. The whale shark is slowly passing by. Schools of Trevally are circling around it, feeling protected by the sheer size of the whale shark. They can grow to a length of 12.5 meters and can weigh up to 21500 kilograms.
The whale shark can be the biggest fish but it feeds on tiny organism: plankton, krill, fish eggs. They spend around 7.5 hours per day feeding. A 6-meter shark takes the amount of 600 cubic meters/hour into their mouth and the amount of plankton filtered from the water is 2.8 kilograms per hour. In total 21 kilograms per day.
If you would like to see the whale shark at Richelieu rock, the best time of the year is from January till April. You can visit the Richelieu rock dive site on a liveaboard trip or diving day trip. All these trips leave from Khao Lak.
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GoPro HD video by Bertram Kuehl