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Common Name : Whaleshark

Scientific Name : Rhincodon typus

Fishing Type : 漁撈物種

Seafood Rating : 限制食用

≡ Features ≡
The largest shark in the world, as long as to 20m long. Eyes relatively small. Head very broad and flattened; mouth nearly subterminal, very wide; has large gill slits, unique filtering structure. Color: a unique checkerboard pattern of white or yellow spots, horizontal and vertical stripes on a grey, bluish, reddish or greenish brown body.†Caudal fin forked.


≡ Habitat ≡
Circumglobal, pelagic, oceanodromous. Feeds on planktonic and nektonic prey, such as small fishes, krill, crustaceans and squids. Migrates as prey goes. Ovoviviparous, low fertility; sexual maturity takes 30 years in average to breed next generation.


≡ Distribution ≡
Widespread in the tropical and warm temperate oceans, and around Taiwan coasts.


≡ Fishing Type ≡
Whalesharks are bycatch mainly in set net, spear, or gill net, while they chase prey and mistakenly enter the nets. In addition, spear fishermen deviate to capture whale shark for the high market demand and profit.


≡ Current Situation ≡
Taiwan seafood popularity has crewed whale shark one of the delicacies, and caused the country a notorious name of killing this globally conservatory fish listed in the Convention on International Trade in. Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora. Despite the establishment of whaleshark fishing reporting system by Fisheries Agency, the situation gets worse, owing to fishermen’s leaky reports, and illegal imports from the Philippines, and China. Currently, whale shark is listed one of the fish restricted by Taiwan government, in number and size as well. Fishermen are obligated to notify on-site fishery units if any whale shark is captured.

 
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