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Abstract

Management of whale shark Rhincodon typus populations is hampered by a lack of information on the range travelled by individual whale sharks. This applies particularly in South-east Asia where the whale shark is increasingly used in commercial trade and for ecotourism. In this study an investigation of the movements of individual whale sharks from the greater Sulu Sea region was initiated using satellite telemetry. The movements of six sharks were monitored from 7 to 128 days. Two sharks travelled distances of 4567 and 8025 km. Both sharks moved through multiple political jurisdictions, confirming the need to manage the populations on a multilateral or regional level.