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Showing posts with label Shark. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Shark. Show all posts

Walking Shark (Hemiscyllium halmahera)

(© CI/photo by Mark Erdmann)

The Walking Shark or Hemiscyllium halmahera is a newly discovered species from Indonesia. Found off the remote eastern Indonesian island of Halmahera, this is the third species of walking shark in the past six years to be discovered in eastern Indonesia. These sharks will use their fins to “walk” across the ocean floor, searching for food in the darkness of night. This species is harmless to humans and can grow to about 30" (76cm) in length. You can check out some underwater footage of this shark walking in the video below.


Little more is know about this new species. If you have any additional information about the Walking Shark please leave us a comment below.


Salmon Shark (Lamna ditropis)


The Salmon Shark or Lamna ditropis is a species of shark that is found exclusively in the Northern Pacific Ocean. This shark is an apex predator that feeds on Sablefish, Herring, Squid, and of course Salmon. Growing to about 10 ft (3m) and weighing in at almost 1000lbs (450kg) these sharks are sometimes confused with the much more dangerous Great White Shark. They have a white underbelly with the rest of their body a grey to black coloration along with some dark patches.  For an in depth look at this species you can watch a 47 minute documentary by National Geographic in the video below.


One characteristic that sets the Salmon Shark apart from other species is their ability to regulate their body temperature. This helps them survive farther north then almost every species of shark with the exception of the Greenland Shark. They have vascular heat ex-changers known as retia mirabilia, that keeps the blood moving toward extremities. When the blood returns it is warmed, which keeps the core of the shark heated.

Salmon Sharks are ovoviviparous, which means the mother carries the eggs in her belly until they are ready to be born.  A litter size of 2 to 6 pups is not uncommon.  Once hatched they will feed off their embryo until they are ready to feed on their own.

If you have any additional information about the Salmon Shark please leave us a comment below.



Japanese Bullhead Shark (Heterodontus japonicus)


The Japanese Bullhead Shark or Heterodontus japonicus is species of shark from the Heterodontidae family. This saltwater fish is found in the northwestern Pacific Ocean off the coasts of Japan, Korea, and China. They can grow to about 3.9 feet (1.2 meters) in length, and are found on the bottom of the ocean floor in depths of up to 120 feet (37 meters). These sharks can be identified by their short, blunt head and two high dorsal fins each with its own sharp spine for protection. They also have a pattern of irregularly shaped, vertical brown bands and stripes that adorn their bodies.
Japanese Bullhead Shark are known by several names including simply a Bull Head or Cat Shark, but also the Japanese Horn Shark, Cestracion Shark, and Port Jackson shark. These sharks are rather docile and feed on shelled invertebrates and small fish. With molar-like teeth, they grind their crunchy meals to a pulp making them easy to digest. When they reproduce the females will sometimes create communal nests in which they deposit their eggs. Often these nests are located in rock beds or among kelp. These nests are not guarded and the eggs do not hatch for an entire year!  This shark is not considered to be dangerous to humans, but you should be aware of their sharp spines on each dorsal fin.  You can check out the Japanese Bullhead Shark underwater in the video below.


If you have any additional information about the Japanese Bullhead Shark please leave us a comment below.


Sand Tiger Shark (Carcharias taurus)


The Sand Tiger Shark or Carcharias taurus is found in coastal waters worldwide. They are often seen in and around sandy beaches. This species of saltwater fish goes by several different names including the Spotted Ragged Tooth Shark, Blue Nurse Sand Tiger and the Grey Nurse Shark. Reaching just over 11 feet (3.4 meters) these sharks will feed on crustaceans, squid, skates and small bony fish. Despite its fearsome looking teeth, this shark is relatively harmless and slow moving.  You can learn a little more about the Sand Tiger Shark in the video below from the Discovery Channel. 


The Sand Tiger Shark has a couple odd characteristics that distinguish it from other species of shark. They actually have the ability to breath air from the surface which allows it to float near the surface with ease. They also have small eyes that have no eyelids.  Not only this, but they also practice intrauterine cannibalism, which means that during pregnancy the developed embryo will feed upon its siblings!

This shark is kept in many aquariums throughout the world and does very well in captivity. Unfortunately, like so many other creatures in the ocean, this species is listing as vulnerable on the International Union for Conservation of Nature Red List. If you have any additional information about the Sand Tiger Shark please leave us a comment below.

Broadnose Sevengill Shark (Notorynchus cepedianus)


The Broadnose Sevengill Shark or Notorynchus cepedianus is part of the Hexanchidae family and gets its name from the seven gill slits along the sides of its head. Most sharks have only five gill slits, with the exception of a very small few with six. This species of saltwater fish can grow to about 9-1/2 feet (2.9 meters) and has a large, thick body, with a broad head and blunt snout. Their teeth are jagged on top, with comb-shaped teeth on the bottom. The body and fins have small white and black spots scattered throughout.

Like many other species of sharks, the sevengill is counter-shaded which means its dorsal surface is silver-gray to brown in order to blend with the dark water and substrate when viewed from above. In contrast, its ventral surface is very pale, blending with the sunlit water when viewed from below. These sharks are ovoviviparous and can give birth to over 80 pups in a single litter! Broadnose Sevengill Sharks are not picky eaters and will feed on smaller sharks and fish, rays, chimaeras, cetaceans, pinnipeds and carrion.

You can swim with the Broadnose Sevengill Shark in the video below.


If you have any additional information about the Broadnose Sevengill Shark please leave us a comment below.

Cyclops Shark (Carcharhinus obscurus)

Like something out of a science-fiction film this first photo is from the fetus of a Dusky Shark or Carcharhinus obscurus. This species is actually rather common is oceans worldwide, but rare one-eyed versions of this shark have popped up in several places in the world including Mexico.  Please watch the video below for more information.

It is thought that this these Cyclops Sharks don't live very long in the wild and that is why they are almost never seen.

Adult Dusky Sharks can grow to 4.2 m (14 ft) in length and weight in at 347 kg (765 lbs). They are often caught by fisherman and used it shark fin soup and also for their skin and liver oil.  Unfortunately their slow reproductive rate makes them very susceptible to overfishing. 

If you have any additional information about the Cyclops Shark please leave us a comment below.


Blind Shark (Brachaelurus waddi)

Blind Shark (Brachaelurus waddi) is one of the two species of Carpet Sharks from the Brachaeluridae family. Despite their name, these sharks are not blind, but instead get their name from the fact that they tend to close their eyes when outside of water.

Blind Sharks are found off the Eastern coast of Australia in waters of up to 460' (140 m). These sharks are nocturnal feeders and are often found in seagrass beds or around rocky formations. They will normally dine on any and all invertebrates and a variety of bony fishes. This species can live for up to 18 hours out of water, allowing it to survive being stranded by the outgoing tide.
Like other sharks they are ovoviviparous and normally give birth during the summer months.  They will produce a litter of up to eight pups.  You can check out the Blind Shark in action in the video below...



If you have any additional information about the Blind Shark please leave us a comment below.

Blue Shark (Prionace glauca)

The Blue Shark or Prionace glauca are from the Carcharhinidae family which also includes the Tiger Shark, Bull Shark and the Milk Shark. Blue Sharks are often called the wolves of the sea because they will form schools based on sex and size. These sharks are often found in tropical areas and even have been located in some brackish waters up to 350 meters deep worldwide in tropical and temperate waters.  You can check out the Blue Shark underwater in the video below... 

Blue sharks have a blue colored body with long pectoral fins and a white underbelly. These sharks are large, growing to 12-1/2 feet (3.8 meters) and weighing in at 862lbs (391 kg). These sharks have been known to dine on squid as well as shrimp, smaller sharks, cuttlefish, octopuses and even a few unlucky sea birds.
Like many other sharks, Blue Sharks are viviparous which mean that they have live birth instead of laying eggs. One Blue Shark can produce over 100 pups in one cycle! It takes about 11 months for the pups to develop in a female that is at least 5 years of age. Blue Sharks have a rather odd way of mating which includes the male biting the female. I guess they like it rough! For this reason the female of this species have skin that is 3 times as thick as their male counterparts.

If you have any additional information about the Blue Shark please leave us a comment below.

Bronze Whaler (Carcharhinus brachyurus)

The Bronze Whaler or Carcharhinus brachyurus is a species of shark that is a commonly found near the coast in all the subtropical oceans and seas in the world, with the exception of the east cost of North America. As you can imagine with a name like the Bronze Whaler they are not small, growing to 11' (3.5m) in length and weighing in at 660lbs (300 kg).

Brozne Whaler Sharks go by a couple different names throughout the world including the Narrowtooth Shark, and the Copper Shark. These saltwater fish have a broad snout and are lacking a interdorsal ridge. The Bronze Whaler is actually a grayish bronze in coloration with white on their lower bodies.
These sharks are considered dangerous to humans. They are often found in relatively shallow waters where they feed on schooling fish including Salmon. When they reproduce the Bronze Whaler has up to twenty live pups. They can live to about 30 years old. You can check out the Bronze Whaler in its nature habitat along with some amazing Sardine footage in the video below...

If you have any questions or additional information about the Bronze Whaler shark leave us a comment.

Spotted Ratfish (Hydrolagus colliei)

The Spotted Ratfish or Hydrolagus colliei is actually a shark with venomous spines on the edge of their dorsal fins.  These deep sea fish are found in the Pacific Ocean at depths of up to 3,000 feet deep, but like other Ratfish they will often move into shallower waters during the spring and autumn months.
Spotted Ratfish can grow to about 1-1/2' long (91cm), with the females being the larger of the two.  As you can see in the pictures, they have large pectoral fins that almost look like wings.  They have a very long caudal fin (tail) which is how they got their name, the Ratfish.  Their bodies are dark with white spots and light colored fins.  One thing you will notice right away about these fish if you see encounter them underwater is their glowing green eyes much like a cat!  You can check out the Spotted Ratfish for yourself in the video below... 

Spotted Ratfish feed on shrimp, worms and other small fish. They fall prey to Pacific Halibut and some small to medium sized sharks.  If you have any questions or comments about the Spotted Ratfish please share!

Common Thresher Shark (Alopias vulpinus)

The Common Thresher or Alopias vulpinus is a species shark that can reach 20' (6m) in length and can weigh over 1000lbs! Nearly half of its length comes from its long caudal fin or tail. This long tail is a trait shared by other species in the family Alopiidae. Common Threshers are found in tropical and temperate climates throughout the world, but due to their slow reproduction rate and overfishing this species is close to becoming endangered. These fish have be reported from the surface waters all the way down to 1,800ft (550m) deep! They go by many different names including the Atlantic Thresher, Thintail Thresher, Thrasher, Fox Shark, Grayfish, Green Thresher, Sea Fox, Slasher, Swiveltail, Thresher Shark and Whip-Tailed Shark.  You can check out this shark underwater in the video below... 

The Common Thresher is the largest of the Threshers Sharks which get their names from the thrashing motion that they use to stunt their prey. These saltwater fish are often confused with their close cousin the Pelagic Thresher Shark, but can be differentiated by their bellies. The Common Thresher has the white on its belly that extends in a band over the bases of its pectoral fins.
These fish are fast and have the ability to leap entirely out of the water much like the dangerous Great White Shark. They feed on small schooling fish like Mackerel and Herring. Common Thresher Sharks are not considered to be dangerous to humans.

If you have any additional information or questions about the Common Thresher Shark let us know.

Swellshark (Cephaloscyllium ventriosum)

The Swellshark or Cephaloscyllium ventriosum is a Catshark with the amazing ability to inflate its body to twice its size, much like the Pufferfish. This helps them from falling prey to seals and other sharks that want to make a quick meal of these small saltwater fish.
Swellsharks only grow to about 39" (100cm) in length and are one of the smallest sharks in the world. These sharks are from the Scyliorhinidae family, and are normally found in the subtropical waters of the eastern Pacific Ocean. They have been spotted as deep as 460 meter down. The look of the Swellshark makes it easily confused with the Leopard Shark, because they both have distinctive spots, but the Leopard Shark grows much longer to almost 8'. Younger Swellsharks will also tend to be a bit lighter in color then their more mature counterparts.
This species of shark is nocturnal, spending most of the day sleeping in continental shelves. At night they become active and hunt for small bony fish, crustaceans and mollusks. Like many other sharks, the Swellshark is oviparous. The female with lay her egg sacks and attached it to a reef. The embryo will feed on the egg yoke for 7-12 months before hatching! You can see the Swellshark with your own eyes underwater in the video below...

If you have any additional information about the Swellshark please share!

Elephant Shark (Callorhinchus milii)

The Elephant Shark or Callorhinchus milii is one of those fish you would think was created in some sort of science fiction novel. This saltwater fish is found in the waters off of Southern Australia and around New Zealand and without a doubt has one of the strangest mouths of any fish in the world! Above this odd mouth is it's "trunk" which can sense movement and weak electrical field that are given off by potential prey on the sandy bottom, much like the Hammerhead Shark. The Elephant Fish's pectoral fins are large and help them maneuver though the waters. They have two dorsal fins that are very widely spaced. All this makes them an the Elephant Fish easy to identify.Elephant Fish go by a few different names including the Australian Ghost Shark, Makorepe, Whitefish, Plownose Chimaeras and Elephant Fish. If you are fishing for Elephant Shark you should consider the fact that they are normally found between 200 and 500 meters deep. The only exception to this rule is when they spawn. At this time they are found in relatively shallow waters, which makes them easy to be caught by fisherman. Once caught, they provide flesh that is quite edible and is said to be best fried and battered much like Cod.  You can learn a little more about the Elephant Shark in the video below...


If you have any additional information about Elephant Fish including fishing tips or recipes please leave us a comment...

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