Tue, December 07, 2021

in-focus

Expert dismisses claim of 280 whale sharks spotted in Koh Tao


A marine expert rejected recent reports saying that 280 whale sharks had been spotted in Thailand last year, saying the possibility is that the same whale sharks were seen 280 times.

Thon Thamrongnawasawat, deputy dean of the Kasetsart University’s Fisheries Faculty, said in a Facebook post on Monday that an official report from the Department of Wildlife and Fishery says only 86 whale sharks were spotted in Thailand in 2020.

The professor said fewer than 100 whale sharks have been seen on average every year over the past five years, so seeing 280 of them swimming near Koh Tao is impossible.

He said whale shark usually swims back and forth, and are solitary animals. They may join a pod comprising four or five whale sharks, but then usually separate.

He added that the top five places in Thailand where a whale shark can be spotted are Richelieu Rock about 200 kilometres northwest of Phuket, Koh Tao’s Red Rock or Nangyuan Pinnacle, Eight Mile Rock off the coast of Koh Lipe, off the coast of Koh Tao and Chumphon province. Recently, whale sharks have also been spotted near Koh Losin and Phang Nga.

 

Expert dismisses claim of 280 whale sharks spotted in Koh Tao

Published : November 02, 2021

By : THE NATION