Pugnacity of the Whale Shark, Rhincodon

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<ul><li><p>Pugnacity of the Whale Shark, RhincodonAuthor(s): J. L. B. SmithSource: Copeia, Vol. 1967, No. 1 (Mar. 20, 1967), p. 237Published by: American Society of Ichthyologists and Herpetologists (ASIH)Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/1442210 .Accessed: 04/12/2014 20:26</p><p>Your use of the JSTOR archive indicates your acceptance of the Terms &amp; Conditions of Use, available at .http://www.jstor.org/page/info/about/policies/terms.jsp</p><p> .JSTOR is a not-for-profit service that helps scholars, researchers, and students discover, use, and build upon a wide range ofcontent in a trusted digital archive. We use information technology and tools to increase productivity and facilitate new formsof scholarship. For more information about JSTOR, please contact support@jstor.org.</p><p> .</p><p>American Society of Ichthyologists and Herpetologists (ASIH) is collaborating with JSTOR to digitize,preserve and extend access to Copeia.</p><p>http://www.jstor.org </p><p>This content downloaded from 169.230.243.252 on Thu, 4 Dec 2014 20:26:22 PMAll use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions</p><p>http://www.jstor.org/action/showPublisher?publisherCode=asihhttp://www.jstor.org/stable/1442210?origin=JSTOR-pdfhttp://www.jstor.org/page/info/about/policies/terms.jsphttp://www.jstor.org/page/info/about/policies/terms.jsp</p></li><li><p>ICHTHYOLOGICAL NOTES ICHTHYOLOGICAL NOTES </p><p>PUGNACITY OF THE WHALE SHARK, RHINCODON.-From its size alone the gi- gantic whale shark, Rhincodon typus Smith, always excites interest. It is so widespread and so often seen that it may appear surpris- ing that it was not described and named much earlier. This however had to await the coincidence of the stranding of a speci- men in reasonable condition where it could be examined and named by a competent scientist. This happened first at the Cape of Good Hope. </p><p>The monotypic Rhincodon is perhaps most abundant in the western Indian Ocean; certainly it appears to be seen more often in that area than elsewhere. It appears to be particularly well known in the Mauritius- Seychelles area, where it is often seen from boats and by divers. </p><p>As with large whales, the whale shark appears to be generally inoffensive, certainly all reports of its habits have stressed this character. Divers and people in small boats have repeatedly approached close to this animal in the surface without eliciting any hostile response. Generally, it appears that the whale shark has completely ignored them and even divers or swimmers who have touched or clambered on the animal while it was swimming. Fortunately this giant shark has not been exploited commercially, so that its obvious natural placidity does not appear to have been undermined by engendered fear of men and boats. </p><p>It has therefore been all the more surpris- ing to receive a recent report of a different nature. Mr. J. Maurice Jauffret, noted angler and observer of marine life, of Port Louis, Mauritius, has written as follows: "As you are aware, RHINCODON TYPUS, the whale shark, is very common in our waters, and, whilst fishing, I have had many occasions to take my boat very close to them. They had showed no particular interest in the boat. </p><p>"Since last year however, three fishing boats (cabin cruisers) belonging to members of our club have been attacked by these sharks whilst members of the crew were play- ing fish hooked in a shoal. Fortunately the boats sustained no damage. The last attack was made on my boat in which my son, Maurice, aged 23, was fishing. He reported that he saw the shark near a shoal of tunny, and whilst one of his friends was bringing in a 30 lb. fish, the monster (about 50 ft. </p><p>PUGNACITY OF THE WHALE SHARK, RHINCODON.-From its size alone the gi- gantic whale shark, Rhincodon typus Smith, always excites interest. It is so widespread and so often seen that it may appear surpris- ing that it was not described and named much earlier. This however had to await the coincidence of the stranding of a speci- men in reasonable condition where it could be examined and named by a competent scientist. This happened first at the Cape of Good Hope. </p><p>The monotypic Rhincodon is perhaps most abundant in the western Indian Ocean; certainly it appears to be seen more often in that area than elsewhere. It appears to be particularly well known in the Mauritius- Seychelles area, where it is often seen from boats and by divers. </p><p>As with large whales, the whale shark appears to be generally inoffensive, certainly all reports of its habits have stressed this character. Divers and people in small boats have repeatedly approached close to this animal in the surface without eliciting any hostile response. Generally, it appears that the whale shark has completely ignored them and even divers or swimmers who have touched or clambered on the animal while it was swimming. Fortunately this giant shark has not been exploited commercially, so that its obvious natural placidity does not appear to have been undermined by engendered fear of men and boats. </p><p>It has therefore been all the more surpris- ing to receive a recent report of a different nature. Mr. J. Maurice Jauffret, noted angler and observer of marine life, of Port Louis, Mauritius, has written as follows: "As you are aware, RHINCODON TYPUS, the whale shark, is very common in our waters, and, whilst fishing, I have had many occasions to take my boat very close to them. They had showed no particular interest in the boat. </p><p>"Since last year however, three fishing boats (cabin cruisers) belonging to members of our club have been attacked by these sharks whilst members of the crew were play- ing fish hooked in a shoal. Fortunately the boats sustained no damage. The last attack was made on my boat in which my son, Maurice, aged 23, was fishing. He reported that he saw the shark near a shoal of tunny, and whilst one of his friends was bringing in a 30 lb. fish, the monster (about 50 ft. </p><p>long) raised his head out of the water and came straight for the boat. He hit the boat astern and turned her right round. The shock was so hard that all the crew were thrown down. My son then put the engine in full throttle and the shark did not fol- low." </p><p>In response to queries Mr. Jauffret has assured me that there is no question of the identity of at least the shark that attacked his launch. From long experience he and others mentioned know this shark well and they clearly saw on this particular animal the light markings characteristic of the species. </p><p>It is significant that the circumstances of attack in all the cases reported by Mr. Jauffret were identical. Each attack was directed at a boat in which an angler was playing a large fish hooked from a shoal. </p><p>J. L. B. SMITH, Rhodes University, Grahams- town, South Africa. </p><p>REDUCTION IN BRANCHIOSTEGAL RAY NUMBER.-Hubbs (1919) has pub- lished virtually the only comparative study of teleostean branchiostegal rays. Recently Dr. D. E. McAllister has presented the results of a much more extensive study of the subject in a Ph.D. thesis which is now in press. Drs. McAllister and D. M. Cohen have been kind enough to offer suggestions that have been incorporated in the present note. </p><p>Hubbs (1919) showed that among teleosts there tends to be a large though variable number (usually 10-20) branchiostegal rays in lower forms, whereas acanthopterans al- most never have more than eight. Time after time, however, this evolutionary ten- dency for gradual reduction in number is </p><p>abruptly short-circuited to four or even fewer rays. The present note will attempt to show that many instances of this sort have a functional explanation. </p><p>The milkfish, Chanos chanos, with four branchiostegals, is an example. Chanos (Fig. lc, d) is a small-mouthed fish, and its man- dibular articulation, as compared with the more usual condition exemplified by Elops (Fig. la, b), has moved far forward. In association with this, the quadrate of Chanos has become anteriorly displaced and has lost the normal contact not only with the from the posterior end of the symplectic to </p><p>long) raised his head out of the water and came straight for the boat. He hit the boat astern and turned her right round. The shock was so hard that all the crew were thrown down. My son then put the engine in full throttle and the shark did not fol- low." </p><p>In response to queries Mr. Jauffret has assured me that there is no question of the identity of at least the shark that attacked his launch. From long experience he and others mentioned know this shark well and they clearly saw on this particular animal the light markings characteristic of the species. </p><p>It is significant that the circumstances of attack in all the cases reported by Mr. Jauffret were identical. Each attack was directed at a boat in which an angler was playing a large fish hooked from a shoal. </p><p>J. L. B. SMITH, Rhodes University, Grahams- town, South Africa. </p><p>REDUCTION IN BRANCHIOSTEGAL RAY NUMBER.-Hubbs (1919) has pub- lished virtually the only comparative study of teleostean branchiostegal rays. Recently Dr. D. E. McAllister has presented the results of a much more extensive study of the subject in a Ph.D. thesis which is now in press. Drs. McAllister and D. M. Cohen have been kind enough to offer suggestions that have been incorporated in the present note. </p><p>Hubbs (1919) showed that among teleosts there tends to be a large though variable number (usually 10-20) branchiostegal rays in lower forms, whereas acanthopterans al- most never have more than eight. Time after time, however, this evolutionary ten- dency for gradual reduction in number is </p><p>abruptly short-circuited to four or even fewer rays. The present note will attempt to show that many instances of this sort have a functional explanation. </p><p>The milkfish, Chanos chanos, with four branchiostegals, is an example. Chanos (Fig. lc, d) is a small-mouthed fish, and its man- dibular articulation, as compared with the more usual condition exemplified by Elops (Fig. la, b), has moved far forward. In association with this, the quadrate of Chanos has become anteriorly displaced and has lost the normal contact not only with the from the posterior end of the symplectic to </p><p>237 237 </p><p>This content downloaded from 169.230.243.252 on Thu, 4 Dec 2014 20:26:22 PMAll use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions</p><p>http://www.jstor.org/page/info/about/policies/terms.jsp</p><p>Article Contentsp. 237</p><p>Issue Table of ContentsCopeia, Vol. 1967, No. 1 (Mar. 20, 1967), pp. 1-258Volume InformationFront MatterBrain Patterns in Minnows of the Genus Hybopsis in Relation to Feeding Habits and Habitat [pp. 1 - 39]Commensalism between Midge Larvae (Diptera: Chironomidae) and Catfishes of the Families Astroblepidae and Loricariidae [pp. 39 - 45]Macristiella perlucens, A New Clupeiform Fish from the Gulf of Mexico [pp. 46 - 50]The Pharyngeal Teeth of Larval and Juvenile Suckers (Catostomus) [pp. 50 - 54]Intertidal Life-History of the Rock Gunnel, Pholis gunnellus, in the Western Atlantic [pp. 55 - 61]A Natural Population of Hybrid Sunfishes: Lepomis macrochirus Chaenobryttus gulosus [pp. 62 - 71]Review of the Mackerel Genera Scomber and Rastrelliger with Description of a New Species of Rastrelliger [pp. 71 - 83]Seasonal Changes in the Ovary of a Sisorid Catfish, Glyptosternum pectinopterum [pp. 83 - 88]South American Cyprinodont Fishes Allied to Cynolebias with the Description of a New Species of Austrofundulus from Venezuela [pp. 89 - 100]Courtship Patterns and the Phylogeny of the Urodeles [pp. 100 - 117]Identity of the Frog Cornufer unicolor and Application of the Generic Name Cornufer [pp. 117 - 121]Egg Laying and Development in the Garden Lizard, Calotes versicolor [pp. 121 - 125]Two New Species of Tree Frogs (Genus Phyllomedusa) from Panam [pp. 125 - 131]Intergradation between the Painted Turtles Chrysemys picta picta and Chrysemys picta dorsalis [pp. 131 - 136]Nasal Salt Gland Excretion and Adjustment to Sodium Loading in the Lizard, Ctenosaura pectinata [pp. 136 - 140]The Role of Substrate Moisture and Dew in the Water Economy of Leopard Frogs, Rana pipiens [pp. 141 - 149]Male-Male Interactions and Chorusing Intensities of the Great Plains Toad, Bufo cognatus [pp. 149 - 154]The Extracolumella and Tympanic Cavity of the "Earless" Monitor Lizard, Lanthanotus borneensis [pp. 154 - 159]The Multipartite Testis of the Snake Leptotyphlops phillipsi [pp. 159 - 163]Survival of the Earless Lizard, Holbrookia maculata, under Natural and Artificial Anaerobic Conditions [pp. 163 - 167]Fossil Box Turtles (Terrapene) from Central North America, and Box Turtles of Eastern Mexico [pp. 168 - 179]Terrapene of Western Mexico, with Comments on the Species Groups in the Genus [pp. 180 - 187]A Succession of Pliocene and Pleistocene Snake Faunas from the High Plains of the United States [pp. 188 - 202]Variation and Distribution of the Iguanid Lizard Sceloporus bulleri, and the Description of a Related New Species [pp. 202 - 213]Food Habits of the Green Frog, Rana clamitans, before and during Metamorphosis [pp. 214 - 218]Herpetological NotesColor Varieties, Brood Size, and Food of South African Pelamis platurus (Ophidia: Hydrophiidae) [p. 219]Population Changes in a Tropical Lizard Anolis limifrons on Barro Colorado Island, Panama Canal Zone [pp. 219 - 222]Color Change in the Gecko Sphaerodactylus [pp. 222 - 223]Unusual Feeding of Lizards on an Island [pp. 223 - 224]Centipede in Stomach of Young Vipera ammodytes meridionalis [p. 224]Panting and Pulmonary Inflation, Two Mutually Exclusive Responses in the Chuckwalla, Sauromalus obesus [pp. 224 - 225]The Systematic Status of the Toad Bufo politus Cope, 1862 [pp. 225 - 226]The Diet of Rattlesnakes and Copperheads in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park [pp. 226 - 227]Temperature Effect on Breeding of the Toad, Bufo variegatus, in Southern Chile [pp. 227 - 230]Running Speed of the Lizard Basiliscus basiliscus on Water [pp. 230 - 233]The Nuclear DNA of a Caecilian [p. 233]</p><p>Ichthyological NotesA Method for the Manifestation of Lateral-Line Canals and Their Neuromasts in Fishes [pp. 234 - 235]Discovery of a Second Specimen of the Darter, Etheostoma trisella [pp. 235 - 236]Pugnacity of the Whale Shark, Rhincodon [p. 237]Reduction in Branchiostegal Ray Number [pp. 237 - 239]Ethyl p-aminobenzoate: An Anesthetic for Cold-Blooded Vertebrates [pp. 239 - 240]Feeding Behavior of a Young Stargazer, Astroscopus y-graecum [pp. 240 - 241]The Saccus Vasculosus of the Tuna Brain [pp. 241 - 242]Tooth Pattern Reversal in Three Species of Sharks [pp. 242 - 244]Fish Remains from Southern New England Archeological Sites [pp. 244 - 245]First Atlantic Records of the Narrow-Corseleted Frigate Mackerel, Auxis thazard [pp. 245 - 247]Observations of Basking Sharks and Great White Sharks in Monterey Bay, 1948-50 [pp. 247 - 250]Color Pattern Changes with Increasing Size in the Western Atlantic Trunkfish Lactophrys trigonus [pp. 250 - 251]</p><p>Reviews and Commentsuntitled [p. 252]untitled [p. 252]untitled [pp. 252 - 253]untitled [p. 253]untitled [pp. 253 - 25...</p></li></ul>

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