The largest fish in the ocean come to La Paz Bay every year. From early winter until late spring the whale sharks can be found feeding in the rich waters of the Sea of Cortez and in the Bay of La Paz in Baja California Sur. The gentle giants of the sea are the largest fish in the world and each season return to the waters close to the city of La Paz. Seeing these ocean behemoths in their natural environment or swimming close to these fish can be an exciting outing for young and old. Island tour boats that visit the Isla Espiritu Santos or the sea lion colony at Los Islotes often close the trip with a whale shark encounter.
Whale sharks are fish, not air breathing mammals, as they come from the family of the second part of their name, sharks and the Rhincodon genus. These giant filter feeding fish known scientifically as Rhincodon typus eat amongst the smallest creatures in the ocean , plankton. Moving slowly through the water, filtering thousands of gallons per day, these fish glean their nutrients from the rich winter waters of the Sea of Cortez.
The whale sharks here in La Paz are often 7-10 meters in length. The fish can live as much as 70 years. The species originated about 60 million years ago.