HOUSTON — The largest fish species in the world, the endangered whale shark, was recently spotted off the jetties in Port Mansfield, KRGV reported.

A professor who was fishing recorded video of the whale shark in the water and shared it with the TV station.

It’s the second sighting in a week near South Padre Island.

The slow-moving whale shark came as close as one of the sand bars for a meal, biology professor Dr. Tim Bonner said. Bonner said the whale sharks are drawn to the warm water in the Gulf of Mexico where they can feed on plankton and fish.

National Geographic states the whale shark can reach lengths of 40 feet and weigh 11 tons.

Despite their large size, they are docile and will actually allow swimmers to “hitch a ride” as they swim along. They are filter feeders, which means they swim with their mouths open to collect food – filtering out what they don’t want.

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