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Whale shark at the Georgia Aquarium. Zac Wolf / Wikimedia Commons / CC BY-SA 2.5

A team of scientists has tracked a whale shark (Rhincodon typus) across more than 20,000 kilometers (over 12,000 miles) of ocean, the longest migration ever recorded for the species.

In 2011, the researchers attached a transmitting tag to a shark they named "Anne" in the Pacific Ocean near Panama's Coiba Island. Over the next 841 days, Anne's transmitter would ping the ARGOS satellite whenever she swam near the surface. Those data points allowed the team to follow her movements south to the Galapagos Islands and clear across the Pacific to the Marianas Trench south of Japan and east of the Philippines—a distance of 20,142 kilometers (12,516 miles).

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