Hunters of the deep: top ten weird facts about sharks

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These notorious monsters of the deep have some particularly quirky characteristics!

1. Shark babies are called pups.

Shark mums don’t care for their babies after they are born. Soon after birth, sharks pups swim away to fend for themselves. They are born with fully-fledged sets of teeth and are able to feed and live on their own.

2. The upper side of a shark is generally dark…

…to blend in with the water from above and their undersides are white or lighter coloured to blend in with the lighter surface of the sea from below. This helps to camouflage them from predators and prey.

3. Sharks predate the dinosaurs by 200 million years.

The largest known species of shark, C. megalodon, might have reached a maximum length of 24m.

4. Angel sharks, also known as sand devils, dig themselves into piles of sand…

…And wait for unsuspecting fish to pass by before attacking.

5. Certain shark species (such as the great white)…

…will drown if they stop moving.

6. A study completed in 2013 has found that shark mums…

…go home – to the place where they were born – to give birth to their young. The gestation period for a pregnant female shark can range from five months to two years.

7. Signs that a circling shark will attack…

…It will hunch its back, lower its pectoral fins (fins near its belly) and swim in zigzag motions.

8. Scalloped hammerhead sharks will sometimes visit…

…“cleaning stations” where small fish clean the parasites off their skin.

9. The smallest shark discovered is the…

…dwarf lanternshark which is 16cm long.

10. Sharks’ livers contain lots of oil.

This makes the liver a relatively buoyant organ, which helps sharks keep their balance in the water.



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