Is Destiny From 'Finding Dory' A Whale Or A Shark? The Character's Origin Is Unclear

It's a whale! It's a shark! No, it's a whale shark! If you're confused, I'm talking about Destiny the whale shark in Finding Dory , who's one of the stand-out characters from the new movie. Destiny and Dory used to be friends, and in the new film, viewers get a chance to meet Destiny and get to know her story — although that doesn't solve the mystery of what a whale shark actually is. Whether Destiny is a whale or a shark is unclear in the movie, but thankfully, I have the answer.

Despite the deceiving name of the species, a whale shark is not actually a whale. Whale sharks or Rhincodon typus (in case you're playing trivia later) are the biggest fish and sharks in the world. Classified by the World Wildlife Federation as "gentle giants," they have their own version of "fingerprints" in the spots that coat their outer layers. Scientists can photograph and catalogue these spots to identify new whale sharks and keep track of the ones they've already catalogued. Pretty cool, right?

In addition to being gigantic, whale sharks are completely harmless to humans, so that's a big plus. Also, the presence of whale sharks indicates a presence of plankton (which they eat) and lets us know that our oceans are generally healthy and doing well. If we noticed a lack of whale sharks, we should be worried. Like, The Day After Tomorrow worried.


So now that you know all about whale sharks, what can you expect from Destiny in Finding Dory? Well, it's clear that in some way or another, Destiny will aide Dory in the search for her parents. Since they used to be friends, it seems like Destiny might be the key to helping Dory unlock the mystery behind where Dory's missing folks are. And, since the temperament of whale sharks seems to be gentle and noble, I'd wager that Destiny is going to reflect that. Unlike Nemo's Bruce, who was a shark but didn't eat fish, Destiny probably does eat plankton and probably won't play against type, but that doesn't make her a bad guy. I'm expecting a super friendly, fun-loving, whale shark who is super excited to be reunited with her old friend, Dory.

Regardless if Destiny sticks closely to the characteristics of a whale shark or if she completely diverges, she's sure to swim her way into viewers' hearts.

Images: Pixar; Giphy