Swimming with Whale Sharks - Zero Waste Cartel

Swimming with Whale Sharks

I wanted to share this life-changing experience with you! 

The other day I woke up at the crack of dawn. Hopped in a small boat. Drove out to the middle of the ocean. And jumped into the ocean with whale sharks. 

It was an absolutely breath-taking experience! So I made a video to share with you.  

However, on the trip I learnt some devastating facts about plastic waste. Once again, irresponsible humans are damaging the ecosystem of these beautiful creatures.  

See the video below, and keep scrolling for the facts.

First I'll start with some happy facts: 

  • They’re not whales, but the world’s largest fish. The ones we saw were “medium” sized - but they were still 3x bigger than me. 
  • Although the mouth can stretch to 4 feet wide - their teeth are so tiny that they can only eat small fish, by using their gill rakers as a suction filter. Watching them eat looks like a huge vacuum! 

Now, the not so happy facts: 

  • They can live to 150 years old  - although sadly only 10% survive to adulthood 
  • Like other sharks, they are under great threat. Many get caught in fishing gear and the fins are even eaten in some countries. 
  • Climate change is warming the ocean water (their home) - which results in rising sea levels, the loss of icy polar habitats, and the decline of food sources. 
  • And plastic pollution is making things even worse. There’s an estimated 8 million tons of plastic entering our oceans every year, with 5.25 trillion pieces of plastic waste estimated in our oceans. These break down into tiny microplastics which are easily consumed through the whale sharks’ suction filters in their gills.  

Hearing the not so happy facts is upsetting. But it's nice for all of us to be a part of this community. 

Here we can all do our best to make the world a cleaner place to live.

Hope you enjoy the video 💕

Looking for plastic-free products? Here are some of our favorites.

Bamboo Toothbrushes

Over 850 million plastic toothbrushes are discarded every year in the US. The plastic breaks down into microplastics which often reach rivers and end up in the sea. 

Bamboo toothbrushes are a great alternative to plastic. They have soft bristles which are recommended by dentists & the handle biodegrades at the end of their life.

Shampoo & Conditioner Bars

Looking to replace your bottled shampoo & conditioner? 

These bars are super easy to use, there's no transition period, and they'll leave your hair feeling silky soft & shiny.

Reusable Razor

2 billion razors are estimated to be thrown away every year in the US. 

With this stainless-steel reusable razor, you no longer need to throw any disposable razors away!

Harriet S.  
Harriet is the Co-Founder & Product Development Director at Zero Waste Cartel. When she's not testing new sustainable products, she's surfing small waves in Indonesia.

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