A unique Caribbean resort
Utila, Bay Islands
Whale sharks are the largest known fish species. They are slow-moving filter feeding specimens, found in tropical and warm oceans. They have a lifespan of about 70 years, and can grow up to 35 to 40 feet in length. Despite its size, whale sharks do not pose significant danger to humans, and it is often possible to swim with these magnificent creatures.
Although more frequent in the months of March-April and August-September, Utila whale sharks have been seen around the island year-round. Utila is one of the few places in the world where whale sharks are seen close to shore and the only place where there have been documented sighting every month of the year. That is why Utila is often called the Whale Shark Capital of the Caribbean.
Whale sharks are usually solitary animals, but it is not uncommon for 3 or more singular whale sharks to be sighted in a single day along the northern shores of Utila. Our experienced boat captains and dive masters are consistently on the lookout for whale sharks, and will give you the best opportunity to see and swim with these amazing creatures.
Between dives our experienced boat captains go out looking for whale sharks when conditions are right. They search for "boils" caused by Blackfin Tuna jumping and feeding on schools of sardines near the ocean surface. The sardines feed on plankton which is also the main source of food for whale sharks. Therefore "boils" are often a good indication that whale sharks are in the vicinity. The best way to spot "boils" at great distances is to look for birds circling in the sky.
Although plankton is a substantial part of a whale sharks' diet, they also aggregate at seasonal mass spawning events. They have been observed feeding on tuna spawn, snapper spawn, larvae of a terrestrial crab and schools of anchovy. There are typically more frequent sightings during full moon and last quarter moon during spawning seasons.
2016 Lunar Calendar
Full Last Qtr
23 Jan, 20 Feb, 19 Mar,
23 Apr, 21 May, 18 Jun,
16 Jul, 13 Aug, 17 Sep,
12 Nov, 10 Dec