Swimming with Whale Sharks – Key to their Conservation?

Last month, we traveled to Mexico for Reefs to Rockies’ annual whale shark adventure. Now in its fifth year, this annual trip remains one of our favorites. Every year, humans kill as many as 100 million sharks. We believe that sharks are worth far more alive than dead and swimming with sharks just may be the key to their conservation.

swimming with whale sharks eco tour conservation
Swimming with a whale shark near Isla Mujeres, Mexico.

Isla Mujeres, an island located just offshore of Cancun, Mexico, serves as home base during our whale shark adventures. Isla locals have seen success in transitioning from a fishery-based economy to a tourism-based economy. During summer, large groups of whale sharks (quite possibly the largest groups in the world) congregate about 20 miles offshore from Isla Mujeres. The sharks swim close to the surface as they feed on plankton making it easy to swim alongside them. Whale shark season runs from May through mid-September. Shark numbers tend to peak between mid-July and mid-August so if given the choice, go then.

Isla Mujeres guided tour
Exploring Isla Mujeres with the group during Reefs to Rockies’ annual whale shark trip.

We’ll announce dates for Reefs to Rockies’ 2015 Whale Shark Adventure soon.