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Spatial and temporal characteristics of whale shark and manta aggregations in the Western Caribbean & Gulf of Mexico
Availability: This dataset is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License.
Notes: Only data aggregated per 1-degree cell are available through OBIS. For access to additional data, the provider needs to be contacted.
To better understand aggregation dynamics of whale sharks and manta rays we are investigating their patterns of movement in relation to ephemeral food pulses and anthropogenic threats by deploying satellite location only tags that will provide near real time tracking information to inform the management and conservation of these species. more
Whale sharks (Rhincodon typus) and manta rays (Manta spp.)represent some of the most iconic species of fish worldwide and yet only recently are their patterns of movement becoming known. Whale shark and manta site fidelity and movements in relation to ephemeral food sources and a host of environmental factors are being elucidated through a long term and multi-partner project named the MarineMeganet. The Western Caribbean and Gulf of Mexico possess several aggregations of whale sharks and a large aggregation of manta rays as well as a range of other species of ocean giants that gather seasonally to feed. Although there are no targeted fisheries for the world's largest fish and ray in this region, their large and predictable aggregations remain at risk from ship strikes, uncontrolled tourism and, in the case of the whale shark, the capture of its food source (eg fish that produce the spawn that whale sharks feed on).
Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS), more, data creator
OBIS-SEAMAP: Spatial Ecological Analysis of Megavertebrate Populations, more
Dataset status: Completed
Data type: Data
Metadatarecord created: 2013-06-26
Information last updated: 2014-07-01