Indonesia: Whale sharks seen in Gorontalo

Antara 28 Jun 16;

Gorontalo (ANTARA News) - At least three whale sharks were seen in the waters near the Saronde Island of Gorontalo Province in the last two days.

The director of PT Gorontalo Alam Bahari, Mia Amalia, said here on Tuesday that the whale sharks were of varying sizes.

"While the whale shark that was seen yesterday was nine meters in length, the two seen earlier were smaller," Amalia said.

She added that some employees in Saronde saw the whale sharks from up close. The creatures were looking for food near the Saronde dock.

Amalia noted the whale sharks hunt the fishes and plankton near the island since the Saronde waters are home to many kinds of small fish.

While locals have been noticing the whale sharks since last month, the creatures were seen closer to the seashore in recent weeks.

Amalia said the whale shark has the potential to attract tourists to the island.

The Saronde Island is a favorite tourism destination in Gorontalo and has a restaurant, cottages and water sports.

The whale sharks were also seen in Botubarani Village of Bone Bolango District in March, 2016, turning it into an incidental tourism site for a week.

The administration noted that at least thousands of tourists visited the area on Sunday.(*)

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