Whale sharks & oil in the Gulf


#1

Biologists at the University of Southern Mississippi’s Gulf Coast Research Laboratory (GCRL) in Ocean Springs, Mississippi need your help!

The northern Gulf of Mexico is prime whale shark feeding habitat and the peak whale shark season is at hand. Based on their filter feeding behavior and the amount of time they spend at the surface, these sharks may be highly susceptible to impacts from encounters with the oil.

We are trying to document all sightings of whale sharks in the northern Gulf of Mexico at this time and request your support. If you encounter a whale shark, please help by participating in GCRL’s ONLINE WHALE SHARK SIGHTINGS SURVEY. Also, please tell everyone you know about this survey, to ensure all observations are reported.

To Report a Sighting:
Please complete the survey at http://www.usm.edu/gcrl/whaleshark

Information that is helpful to us includes:

[ul]
[li]Time and duration of encounter[/li][li]Location (GPS coordinates)[/li][li]Approximate size and number of sharks[/li][li]Observed behavior[/li][li]Observed interactions with oil[/li][li]Associated species[/li][li]Photos/video (especially of the region behind the gill slits on the left side of the animal—this is used for identification) [/li][li]Any other distinguishing features (i.e. numbered marker tags located behind the dorsal fin—please notate number)[/li][/ul]

Your participation is greatly appreciated and critical for us to gain a better understanding of how these sharks are being affected at this time. Thank you.

Now join us on facebook: http://www.facebook.com/whalesharkresearch


#2

[ATTACH=CONFIG]919[/ATTACH]

Here’s one.

Location:

Thruster #1


#3

That’s a cool shot! What was that taken from? Is Thruster #1 the name of a rig? Do you have the GPS coordinates?


#4

[QUOTE=JenniferShark;34994]That’s a cool shot! What was that taken from? Is Thruster #1 the name of a rig? Do you have the GPS coordinates?[/QUOTE] I think you are to late for this one Jennifer


#5

[QUOTE=Tim;35014]I think you are to late for this one Jennifer[/QUOTE]

Thanks Tim…I just didn’t have the heart to break it to her, she seemed so excited…:frowning:


#6

In the Nigerian delta…which has a lot more oil in/on it than the gulf…


#7

[QUOTE=Shellback;35016]Thanks Tim…I just didn’t have the heart to break it to her, she seemed so excited…:([/QUOTE]

Thanks guys, I am easily excitable and definitely didn’t quite understand what was going on in that photo. I am still very curious about this. Does this happen a lot? I’m assuming a whale shark stuck in the thruster isn’t a good thing, how do you get them out? How big was this animal? Even more morbid a question, any footage of their internal organs while pulling the shark out?


#8

[QUOTE=bnhpr;35024]In the Nigerian delta…which has a lot more oil in/on it than the gulf…[/QUOTE]

So if their are plenty of whale sharks and lots of oil in the Nigerian delta, have their been any observations of the two together? At this point, the effect that they oil may have is undocumented and so of course we are assuming a worse case scenario. I’d love to hear about previous knowledge on this manner. Please share.


#9

[QUOTE=JenniferShark;35290]So if their are plenty of whale sharks and lots of oil in the Nigerian delta, have their been any observations of the two together? At this point, the effect that they oil may have is undocumented and so of course we are assuming a worse case scenario. I’d love to hear about previous knowledge on this manner. Please share.[/QUOTE]

Not sure, they both were there before me. Some say for millions of years…in coexistence. Whale sharks and natural seepage…just like the gulf has sharks and seepage. We just don’t like to see it spew out of a single hole, and 3 years worth in a month time.

I’ve flown over the gulf/delta for years and seen oil spewing out of the ocean where rigs have never been…


#10

bnhpr -

Here’s why the scientists are worried about whale sharks.

http://www.dailycomet.com/article/20100520/ARTICLES/100519117?Title=World-s-biggest-fish-whale-sharks-vulnerable-to-oil-spill-


#11

[QUOTE=janetmcc;35630]bnhpr -

Here’s why the scientists are worried about whale sharks.

http://www.dailycomet.com/article/20100520/ARTICLES/100519117?Title=World-s-biggest-fish-whale-sharks-vulnerable-to-oil-spill-[/QUOTE]

For whale shark info, I’d ask the sport fishing charters that fish larger boats in deep water. I always see whale sharks hanging around them, since they run chum bags. the boys will jump overboard with mask/fins/snorkel and ride them sometimes.


#12

[QUOTE=janetmcc;35630]bnhpr -

Here’s why the scientists are worried about whale sharks.

http://www.dailycomet.com/article/20100520/ARTICLES/100519117?Title=World-s-biggest-fish-whale-sharks-vulnerable-to-oil-spill-[/QUOTE]

Thank you for posting that article! Indeed, we are concerned about what affects oil may have on these surface filter-feeders, and that it why it is so important for us to collect information on their whereabouts at this time. We attempt to contact anyone and everyone who may encounter these sharks- fishers, boaters, helicopter pilots, and off-shore personnel. Word of mouth helps spread awareness of our survey, so please help by forwarding this information.


#13

Here is another article, from 2000, but still interesting. (perhaps what was alluded to in a previous post) I find it most helpful when in friendly discussions with my more uninformed hippy friends. Some are under the impression that ‘albeit then for the sake of bp’ the gulf would not have a drop of evil. . .ahem. . .oil in the pristine waters.

This catastrophe is, and will continue to be, a totally unacceptable and condemnable disaster. . . but its not the end of the world. . . or the GoM.

Just my humble opinion, but I still have faith.


#14

[QUOTE=SQRMF;35807]Here is another article, from 2000, but still interesting. (perhaps what was alluded to in a previous post) I find it most helpful when in friendly discussions with my more uninformed hippy friends. Some are under the impression that ‘albeit then for the sake of bp’ the gulf would not have a drop of evil. . .ahem. . .oil in the pristine waters.

This catastrophe is, and will continue to be, a totally unacceptable and condemnable disaster. . . but its not the end of the world. . . or the GoM.

Just my humble opinion, but I still have faith.

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2000/01/000127082228.htm[/QUOTE]

Found this old thread, which fits nicely with another find in OSO today.
Contrary to popular belief Oil spill isn’t necessarily caused by the Oil industry, or Shipping: http://www.oilpubs.com/oso/article.asp?v1=20192


#15

[QUOTE=ombugge;196438]Found this old thread, which fits nicely with another find in OSO today.
Contrary to popular belief Oil spill isn’t necessarily caused by the Oil industry, or Shipping: http://www.oilpubs.com/oso/article.asp?v1=20192[/QUOTE]

That’s old hat. The Santa Barbara Channel is a prime example of seepage.


#16

[QUOTE=injunear;196439]That’s old hat. The Santa Barbara Channel is a prime example of seepage.[/QUOTE]

That oil naturally seep from the seabed all over the world (and some places on dry land) is old hat.
The extent of such seepage in the [U]GoM [/U]is NOT!! That was the subject of this article.


#17

I lived in Santa Barbara in the 60s. Yeah, even when they had that big, nasty oil spill. But even before that, anytime we went to the beach, anywhere from Gaviota down to Montecito, we would come back with spots of tar on our feet. Hard to remove, too, until you figure out the secret of using Crisco. Got that one from some die hard surfer dudes. . . .