Whale sharks can grow up to 45 feet, they weigh around 12 tonne and are known to live up to 100 years, they are docile and completely harmless to human beings and are found mainly in warm waters. The Wildlife Trust of India, State Forests and Environment Department and the National Institute of Oceanography (NIO) of Goa is conducting five-year research to study whale shark habitat, map their migration, various aspects of their life cycles and genetic patterns.
This program also launches coral - reef study program, funded by Jamnagar-based Tata Chemicals Limited.
As a part of the program, local fishermen will be trained to collect samples and also be taught how to click photographs of whale sharks using underwater cameras. Later this images will be used for identification of the whale sharks.
Five year study plan is as follows
- First Year - Hydrography and study of patterns of whale shark migration to Saurashtra Coastline.
- Second Year - Population check and dotted pattern analysis.
- Third / Fourth Year - GPS Tracking and Satelite Tagging.
- Fifth Year - Experimenting and Genetic behavior study.
Coral research study might work out a new proposed research center at Dwarka or Mithapura in Jamnagar.
Religious leader like Morari Bapu many others are supporting this Gentle cause, coast guards too will be helping whale sharks to fight against poachers.