Marine life makes up 50-80% of all living creatures. We crunched numbers from Instagram and analyzed how often different marine animals have been hash-tagged. Polar bears, with a whopping of 1.3 million photos, are the most popular marine animals.
1. Polar Bear (#1,312,442)
Additionally, Polar bears may not be an animal you associate with marine life. But, the Arctic animal is indeed a marine animal due to it’s habitat being ice. The polar bear is the only bear in the word that known as a marine animal. As you can see, polar bears are loved by Instagram lovers. Polar bears are endangered species, with the biggest threat to their habitat being the loss of their sea environment due to climate change. There are about 22,000 – 31,000 polar bears left in the world. But we can protect Polar bears by working to lessen use of plastic, recycling and using greener energy solutions.
2. Orca (#691,219)
Orca, known as killer whale, is one of the most iconic marine animals in the world. There are over 600,000 images of the whale shared on Instagram. The Killer Whale is the biggest species in the oceanic dolphin family. Overall, 50,000 are living in the world right now. Orcas can also be found in any ocean in the world. Despite the name being ‘Killer whale’ these animals are no danger to humans. But, humans can be threats to them instead. Humans can keep them in unnatural environments in theme parks or causing an threat to the ocean environment. We can protect Orcas by not supporting organizations that keep them in unhealthy habitats, and also by taking steps reduce the impact of climate change on our oceans.
3. Whale Shark (#542,169)
Whale sharks can be found in so many countries, including Australia, South America, and Asia. Since there has been a huge decrease in the whale shark population, the exact number of whale sharks alive is unknown. An estimation between 119,000 and 238,000 is what we could find. The biggest threats to whale sharks are from the loss of habitat due to over-fishing, coastal development and pollution. We should help to protect whale sharks by lowering seafood consumption and supporting sustainable travel options in coastal areas.
4. Humpback Whale (#293,220)
Humpback Whales can be found in any ocean out there. They are known for their haunting ‘songs’ which are a complex way to communicate with other whales. Whale-watchers love this species because of their habit of leaping out of the water or emerging nose-first from the sea. Humpback whales got their name from the hump in front of their dorsal fin and also from their abnormal flippers. They were hunted ruthlessly until the 1985 law came in about commercial whaling. But now the biggest threat is water pollution dangerous fishing gear or collisions with boats.
5. Great White Shark (#286,438)
Perhaps the fearsome reputation ‘Jaws’ has given to great white sharks which makes them Instagram’s fifth most popular marine animal. Although, in real life, sharks are not as vicious than the film shows. Great white sharks are usually found found in cold, coastal seas around the world. They grow up to around 15 feet in length, which makes them the largest predatory fish. With around 300 saw-like teeth and an incredible sense of smell, these sharks prey on many sea creatures, including other sharks and whales.
6. Manta Ray (#281,653)
The Giant Manta Ray gets the name from the Spanish word ‘manta’ which means blanket or cloak, which describes the body shape of the animal. Being one of the largest fish in the world, manta ray is truly a fascinating creature with 281,653 photos tagged on Instagram, showing that they’re popular too. Manta rays are scattered around the world, with a small estimated amount. There are about 100 to 1,500 of the sea creatures in each region. Studies actually show that manta rays are insanely intelligent, which makes the fact the species are endangered more depressing. The primary threat is fishing, both indirectly and through targeted fishing where the species is caught for its gill-rakes.