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Deep-diving behaviour of a whale shark Rhincodon typus during long-distance movement in the western Indian Ocean

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A whale shark Rhincodon typus satellite tagged off the coast of Mozambique showed a highly directional movement across the Mozambique Channel and around the southern tip of Madagascar, a minimum distance of 1200 km in 87 days. Dives to depths well into the mesopelagic and bathypelagic zones (1286 m maximum depth) were recorded in a bathymetrically non-constraining habitat. The water temperature range recorded during the fish’s movement was 3·4–29·9° C.

Keywords: deep diving; dive behaviour; foraging; migration; ocean stratification; satellite tagging

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: 1: The Open University, Walton Hall, Milton Keynes MK7 6AA, U.K. 2: Manta Ray & Whale Shark Research Centre, Tofo Beach, Mozambique

Publication date: February 1, 2009

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