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During the summer whale sharks and stingrays flock over the Gulf of Mexico . This sight is available for tourist from May to September. There are over 250 whale sharks that were spotted nearby the island. This is considered to be a positive sign since the numbers are increasing every year. Aside from whale sharks, tuna fish, stingrays, dolphins as well do visit Isla Mujeres in the particular.
According to biologist, they feed on algae, small fish and plankton. It is said that species of animals go there mainly for reproduction. It is also concluded that the Isla Mujeres is considered as part of the migration route. Whale sharks and stingrays have one thing in common; they love to collect food in groups which is a sight to see. There are quite a number of operators that take tourists and snorkelers to witness this spectacular event.
If you are planning to see the whale sharks and stingrays, you will have a briefing on the boat. The rules include no touch policy while swimming with white sharks and stingrays. This is very tempting to do especially if the creatures are near you. However, you should remember that they are predators and they are insecure about the changes in their environment. They don’t want their feeding session to be interrupted by curious snorkelers. It is best to just observe them and respect them while in their habitat.
Whale sharks or scientifically known as Rhincodon typus are not whales; they are considered to be the largest fish in the world. They have about 3000 teeth but don’t serve them well. This is due to the fact that they get their food using their large gills on each side of their head. Their huge mouth is found on the front area of their head unlike shark which is underneath. The skin is about 4 inches thick. Overall they are 40 feet long and weigh over 50 tons. In most part of the world, they are captured for their parts.
The stingrays are also considered as a unique sight in the Gulf of Mexico. If you encounter them, they are seen to be graceful creatures found in the sea. You will be given a chance to swim with them although they are quite shy around people. They are comfortable in the presence of whale sharks while sharing the bounty food offered by Mother Nature. Stingrays are related to sharks. They have no teeth but have stinging spines that are used to capture food. They are excellent swimmer and are proven to be acrobatic swimmers when they flap pectoral fins like wings. They love to be alone and gave been proven to be harmless for swimmers and divers. They are about 29 feet long and weigh about 1.5 tons.
By Elsi H