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Nurse Shark (Ginglymostoma cirratum)

The Nurse Shark or Ginglymostoma cirratum is a nocturnal shark that is often found resting on the bottom during the days. These sharks will rest in groups of up to 45 sharks! Sometimes they will even pile up right on top of each other! Nurse Sharks are most often found in warmer waters in the Western Atlantic and Eastern Pacific Oceans. These sharks can be quite large at up to 14' (4.3 meters) in length and weigh in at 330 lbs (150 kg). They are rarely dangerous to humans, most cased of Nurse Shark attacks occur when divers accidently step on or provoke these creatures. They have an unusual mouth with very strong jaws that are filled with thousands of tiny, sharp serrated teeth.

These sharks normally feed on shellfish, coral, fish, shrimp and squid. The Nurse Shark is grayish brown in color and have tail fins that can reach 1/4 of their total length. Nurse sharks are ovoviviparous, which means that the eggs develop and hatch withing the body of the female Nurse Shark. They typically have a litter of 21-28 little ones each mating season. One thing that makes the Nurse Shark different from most others is that they are smooth to the touch, although I can say I recommend getting that close!


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