Keeping sharks/whale sharks in captivity

Discussion in 'Diving, Collecting and Environmental Discussions' started by Reef Maniac, 20 Oct 2008.

  1. Reef Maniac

    Reef Maniac MASA Contributor

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  3. jacquesb

    jacquesb Retired Moderator

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    Thanks Hennie.....

    EDIT: [JB - 22/20/2008] -Hi all - just to let you all know I have now made this discussion it's own thread.......
     
    Last edited: 22 Oct 2008
  4. Shaun

    Shaun Retired Moderator

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    Good to know that.
     
  5. Falcon

    Falcon

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    hmmmm on the bright side that whale shark is improving public awareness of these creatures plight in a big way.........and if its healthy then why not?but i think a whale shark definitely needs more space than ANY aquaruim can provide as its open water and not a reef creAture
     
  6. jacquesb

    jacquesb Retired Moderator

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    Falcon - do you HOW MUCH a whale shark eats? IT IS JUST AS GOOD AS KEEPING A BLUE WHALE or A HUMP-BACKED WHALE in an aquarium!

    It requires at least 1000 tonnes of krill/plankton PER DAY to survive! HOW THE HECK ARE THEY GOING TO FEED THIS POOR CREATURE?
     
  7. goodisor

    goodisor

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    When are these people going to listen [​IMG] That is just wrong,no matter how you look at it.[​IMG]Thats the equavilent of us wearing a straight jacket.
     
  8. Falcon

    Falcon

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    probably they run sea water directly through the system continuously.....
     
  9. jacquesb

    jacquesb Retired Moderator

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    This could be QUITE possible Falcon...... BUT - then again - the whale sharks follow a specific route in the oceans - EVERY YEAR - the same route. When the plankton blooms are really plentiful...... This only happens a certain time of the year.....

    So - what about the rest of the year then?

    Have you seen a "Animal Planet" DVD called Sharks of the Indian Ocean? Or perhaps "Blue Planet"? They explain this migration in both very nicely....
    In "Sharks of the Indian Ocean" the narrators follow the journey of a whale shark, during this time of the year. Explaining (and showing IMAX type footage) how, where and when.... showing other sharks - showing coral reefs.... etc...

    BTW: I have never heard of whale sharks getting to the Red Sea ever? So this shark MUST have been caught in the Indian Ocean somewhere...... The salinity in the Red Sea is far higher than that of the Indian Ocean (36 to 37 ppm at the Red Sea, compared to 33 to 34 at most places in the Indian Ocean).....
     
  10. scubaninja

    scubaninja

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    i agree jacques, there is a cycle and a migration pattern. We had a Australian based researcher come to one of our dive meetings(posted something about it a while back) and he said they definitly go looking for food, he's been researching for some number of years and it seems they follow the groth booms to some extent. one particular shark they tagged did some SERIOUS mileage to find food, so keeping something of this size happy in an aquarium is not cool. But what about the whale sharks at that big aquarium in USA? cant remember the name but saw the pics on Calvins thread, how can they be keeping them too?
     
  11. jacquesb

    jacquesb Retired Moderator

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    ScubaNinja - they MOST likely end up shipping the whale sharks off after a few months in captivity (back to sea) and catch some "new one".....

    This is the ONLY way that this type of thing would be sustainable.....

    UNLESS these guys actually DO indeed feed like 1000 tonnes of krill/plankton a day - and then just flush the whole system once a day to ensure very low nutrient levels...
     
  12. scubaninja

    scubaninja

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    well thats just cruel, let something starve for a few months then chuck it back when its unfit and gotten used to the slow lifestyle of a tank?
     
  13. Falcon

    Falcon

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    they keeping them at the biggest aquarium in the world also,called karoshi sea or something like that(sorry the name eludes me)


    edit:eek:k i got the name it's The Kuroshio Sea and it hold four whale sharks....

    saw this article about how the sharks are killing each other in the new mall in dubai due to too many being in close contact and limited space.like someone said earlier here...some ppl that have money think they can do what they want...i mean when does this race for huge tanks ever end?
     
    Last edited: 21 Oct 2008
  14. Bob the (reef)builder

    Bob the (reef)builder

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    The Okinawa aqaurium has had four of them successfully for some years. Started as youngsters, but reaching adult sizes now. They do not swap them out.
     
  15. scubaninja

    scubaninja

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    ya these people can't be in it for the joy me reefkeeping at all, we need some hippie protesters to go and save the whales! whale sharks that is:)
     
  16. jacquesb

    jacquesb Retired Moderator

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    Hi Bob - do you have any more technical information on this? I would love to read up on it on how exactly they did it? I dived with these beautiful creatures before....
    And I have a DVD showing a lot of scientific information.

    If this is at all possible, I would just LOVE to know HOW exactly they were able to achieve this?

    Perhaps the young whale sharks ate a LOT less, and was perhaps a LOT easier to train onto other foods?

    How big is "young one" and how big is "adult sizes"?

    According to my knowledge fully grown adult whale sharks reach up to 19 metres in length..... And at this stage they eat each 1000 tonnes of krill/plankton per day.....

    That's what I would LOVE to know how the Japanese was able to achieve this?
     
  17. jacquesb

    jacquesb Retired Moderator

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    OK - did some research myself on Google:

    Found the following excerpt:
    (from: URL: Whale Sharks in Captivity)

    One of the most significant captives was a neo-natal pup taken from the litter of a pregnant female caught in the Taiwanese fishery. This male pup was 60 cm long when it first arrived at the Marine Palace Ecological Aquarium, Oita, Japan, and was kept successfully for 3 years and 2 months until it died achieving a total length of 3.7 m - a growth rate of 116cm per year from birth size.

    3.7 metres is not even reaching "teenager stage" yet. This poor fish was still a BABY when it died!

    These fish live for 20 to 28 years in the wild....... This poor fish in this aquarium lived only until 3 years and 2 months! This is still VERY YOUNG! Proof that these fish DO NOT survive in aquariums!

    The oldest living whale shark in captivity at this stage (the only ONE that has survived this long) - has been in captivity for 9 YEARS!

    From the SAME web-site:
    Quoted:
    "The aquarium most notable for whale shark husbandry is the Okinawa Churaumi Aquarium, Japan. From 1980 to 1998, 16 whale sharks (14 males; 2 females) had been kept here and to this day 3 whale sharks are on exhibit. The sharks were all captured around Okinawa Island by set-nets during the months of March to September and ranged in size from 3.1 to 6.3 m weighing between 290 to 1750 kg.
    The sharks were kept in the 27 X 12 X 3.5m Kurosio tank with the water temperature kept between 19.8 to 29.60C, matching environmental conditions during capture. Survival times ranged from as little as 3 days to the current record of nearly 10 years, dependant on their initial condition on arrival, as some animals had been injured during capture.

    The longest surviving whale shark is still at Okinawa aquarium. It was 4.6 meters long on arrival in March 1995. Now after 9 years 9 months of captivity the shark is over 7 metres in length, a growth rate of 24cm per year.

    The whale sharks in the Kurosio tank are fed a mixture of krill, squid and fish sprats. The amount is calculated in relation to their body mass varying from 11% of their weight per week in the first year of captivity to 8% in the third and subsequent years."

    This means that the POOR FISH is now ONLY starting to reach "teenager" stage!

    Hope it survives! They ONLY HAVE 3 left from 16 sharks! WHERE THE HELL DID THE REST GO?
     
  18. scubaninja

    scubaninja

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    to my knowledge they are filter feeders not eatin anythin else, so i think bein trained onto other food might not apply, but i could be wrong?
     
  19. jacquesb

    jacquesb Retired Moderator

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    Hi Scuba - read my post JUST before yours ;)
     
  20. jacquesb

    jacquesb Retired Moderator

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    Some MORE interesting news:
    (From URL: SAGREN V4.2 ~ Breeding Whale Sharks in Captivity?)

    "There are however some very big question marks about breeding whale sharks in captivity, not least being the lack of real knowledge about their mating and birthing habits. "One of the things that's a real question mark is how fast they grow in captivity and whether their hormonal systems keep pace," Hueter said. "If they can grow 3 feet per year, the larger ones could be at a sexually mature size in four to five years. In that time, there could be some reproductive activity". Records from captive-kept whale sharks in Japan indicated that growth rates can be this fast for very small sharks below 3 m but slow dramatically from 21.5 to 29.5 cms (less than 1 foot) per year
    (<a href="../MCNEWS/mcn_v3_1_art3.htm">Marine Conservation News
    3.1</a>). If this is the case then the Georgia aquarium could be waiting an awful long time before the sharks are big enough to start even thinking about reproducing.The other issues have to be whether the sharks will be able to survive in captivity long enough to get to reproductive size (over 8m), the record in Japan is around 10 years, and whether the enormous 22 million litre Ocean Voyager tank is big enough to house four 8m+ whale sharks….."
     
  21. Warr7207

    Warr7207

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    You sure a 1000 tonnes, that is 1 million Kg a day ? seems a little too much
     
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