Big fish are big business in Oslob, Philippines. Aside from its traditional offers of sun, sea, and sand, the fourth class municipality in the province of Cebu has garnered a reputation for being a hub of whale shark tourism.
Its new slogan even says “Guaranteed whale shark sighting.” While that sounded like an ambitious claim, no one was ever disappointed as there are always whale sharks to see. With that said, it seems like a win-win situation for the tourists and the local community. But what about the whale sharks?
While the tourists are taking their Instagram-worthy snaps, the whales are suffering the consequences.
The opportunity to swim with a whale shark is something that no one would want to pass up. However, the 100% success rate of Oslob in their promise of a whale shark encounter is doing more harm than good, especially for the largest known extant fish species themselves.
Behavioural changes in the whale sharks’ natural eating habits
As it turns out, a whale shark encounter has effects of unethical practices on them, such as behavioral changes in the whale sharks’ natural eating habits. Since tourists are feeding them, the whale sharks have to swim to the surface in a vertical feeding position instead of swimming naturally with their mouths open sucking on their meal in the wild.
Feeding the whale sharks disrupts their migration patterns.
Feeding the whale sharks also disrupts their migration patterns. These creatures opted not to migrate as they are fed continuously in Oslob. However, the disruption in their migratory pattern also means that their reproduction and breeding process is interrupted and it might eventually result in the eradication of the entire species.
Whale sharks sustain injuries.
There is a high chance that whale sharks could sustain injuries as they swim towards the feeder boats. Being in Oslob for a long time, the whale sharks have learned to associate boats with food, so they quickly swim towards them, and the constant friction with the boat could damage the shark’s skin. This is evident in the scars found around their mouths.
Poor nutritional content.
Whale sharks normally feed on planktons, sergestid shrimps, fish larvae, and arrow worm, but in Oslob, they get poor nutritional content as they are only fed with sergestid shrimps. Sadly, if there are no tourists, the whale sharks are not fed at all.
Lack of tourist discipline.
Lastly, the local community of Oslob fails to properly educate and inform the tourists on proper etiquette while swimming with the whale sharks. Those who made unnecessary touching of the whale sharks were not stopped or penalized, so tourists had no idea that they did something wrong.
Here’s What Santa Claus Looks Like In Different Countries
#9 is a truly unique Yuletide tradition!
Most children believe in a big jolly man in a bright red suit and white beard carrying a sack full of toys during Christmas. However, Santa Claus doesn't look the same in other countries around the world. In some traditions, the generous being could be clad in green and sometimes isn't even a man at all.
The modern Saint Nicholas with his reindeers, chimney-climbing abilities, and trademark "Ho ho ho" became popular in the 19th century. While this is the jolly old Saint Nick we know, he has different faces, costumes, and personalities around the world. Here are a few of the different kinds of Santa Claus in other countries.
1. Père Noël or Papa Noël (France)
The Wonder of Santa Margarida: A Chapel Right Inside A Volcano
..And it has been sitting there for more than 600 years.
Amidst the vast land of Garrotxa, a comarca of Catalonia, Spain, lies a surrounding volcanic terrain in the Natural Park of La Garrotxa Volcanic Zone.
At the Natural Park of La Garrotxa, there are several walking routes that will lead tourists to an interesting awe-inspiring wonder.
The wonder of Santa Margarida.
Western Australia’s ‘Most Haunted’ Building Rebrands Itself To Attract More Tourists
The place wants to prove that it has more to offer other than tales of horror.
While Oakabella Homestead has successfully marketed itself as the most haunted building in Western Australia - thanks to the tales of lost souls and malevolent spirits that once intrigued its guests - its new owners believe that its high time for its image to be changed.
The Oakabella Homestead was built in 1851, or 10 years earlier than its neighboring town, Northampton 460km from Perth, in the picturesque Chapman Valley. With the site’s eerie history, which includes multiple deaths including that of a 3-year old child and a worker who shot himself, it is easy to understand why its previous owners made money from ghost tours and scary stories.