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Les Principales EspÚces de Requins et leurs Caractéristiques

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The Main Shark Species and their Characteristics

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The Different Species of Sharks - Group of Several Sharks in the Ocean

Many of us know the famous white shark or the hammerhead, whale, basking shark... But did you know that there are about 400 different species 📋 of these large cartilaginous fish (sharks) which belong to the class of Elasmobranchii.

So check out some of the best-known varieties of sharks below, as well as shark information that you may not know! You can also consult the list of shark species from Wikipedia.

Blue Shark Plush

1) The Whale Shark (Rhincodon Typus)

The whale shark is the largest species of shark , and also the largest species of fish in the world! The whale shark can be up to 20 meters long and weigh up to 15 tons 🚚. Their back is gray, blue or brown in color and covered with regularly arranged light spots. Whale sharks are found in the warm waters of the Pacific, Atlantic and Indian oceans.

Despite their huge size, whale sharks feed on some of the ocean's smallest creatures, including crustaceans and plankton. It is not dangerous, nor aggressive; people even swim with whale sharks (which has revived tourism in a town, Donsol .)

Whale Shark with a Diver Beside

It is considered endangered by the IUCN due to overfishing ⛮ because it does not have many predators!

2) The Basking Shark (Cetorhinus Maximus)

The basking shark is the second largest species of shark (and fish). They can be up to 12 meters long and weigh up to 7 tons. Like whale sharks, they feed on tiny plankton and can often be seen "lounging" on the surface of the ocean as they feed by swimming slowly forward and filtering water through their mouths and their gills, where prey is trapped in the gills.

The basking shark is present in all the oceans of the world 🌎, but it is more common in temperate waters. They can also migrate long distances in winter: A shark tagged off Cape Cod (northeastern United States) was later discovered near Brazil.

Large Basking Shark Swimming with Mouth Wide Open

3) The Shortfin Mako Shark (Isurus Oxyrinchus)

The mako shark also called shortfin mako shark is considered the fastest species of shark . These sharks can reach a length of about 4 meters and a weight of about 500 kilograms. They have a light belly and a bluish coloring on the back.

The mako shark is found in the pelagic zone (on the high seas) in the temperate and tropical waters of the Atlantic, Pacific and Indian oceans and the Mediterranean Sea. Its top speed is between 50 and 70 km / h 🐆 which allows it to hunt fish like sailfish or swordfish which are among the fastest and to jump more than 4 meters out of the water! It can live up to 25 years.

Mako Shark Swimming with Fish

4) The Thresher Shark ( Alopiidae )

There are three species of thresher sharks : the common thresher (Alopias Vulpinus), the pelagic thresher (Alopias Pelagicus) and the bigeye thresher (Alopias Superciliosus). These sharks all have large eyes, small mouths, and long, whip-like upper tail lobes. This "whip" is used to herd and stun prey.

It can go up to 500 meters deep and measure up to 6 meters for the largest common thresher sharks for a weight of up to 440 kg . As with many other shark species, the thresher shark 🩊 is endangered due to overfishing and low reproductive rates.

Thresher Shark with Long Tail Fin

5) The Bull Shark (Carcharhinus Leucas)

The bull shark has the dubious distinction of being one of the three species most implicated in unprovoked shark attacks on humans. These large sharks have a blunt snout, gray back and light underside, and can reach a length of around 3.20 meters and a weight of around 160 kilograms .

They tend to frequent warm, shallow and often murky waters near shore and coasts in groups occasionally reaching 50 individuals. The bull shark generally feeds on fish and cuttlefish and is classified as a vulnerable species on the IUCN Red List .

Bull Shark Swimming at Night

6) The Tiger Shark (Galeocerdo Cuvier)

The tiger shark has a darker band on the side, especially in young sharks. They are large sharks that can measure more than 4 meters in length and weigh up to 500 kilograms.

Although đŸ€ż diving with tiger sharks is an activity that some people engage in, tiger sharks are among the sharks most likely to attack humans, it is the second most common shark species that attacks humans. However, shark attacks remain relatively rare.

Tiger Shark Swimming in the Bottom of the Ocean on a Sandbar

7) The White Shark (Carcharodon Carcharias)

White sharks (more commonly known as the great white shark ) are among the ocean's most feared creatures , thanks to the movie "Jaws." Their maximum size has been estimated at around 6 meters long and over 1000 kilograms.

Despite its fierce reputation, the great white shark has an inquisitive nature and tends to investigate its prey before eating it. It may release prey that it finds unpleasant. Some great white sharks can bite humans, but not kill them. Moreover , he never attacks the man by spanking on purpose , he just confuses him with his usual prey 🐟.

Surface White Shark with Big Teeth

It lives in temperate and shallow waters , scientists have noticed that older specimens go to darker waters while younger individuals go to surface waters.

8) Oceania Whitetip Shark (Carcharhinus Longimanus)

Oceanic whitetip sharks generally live in the open ocean , far from land. They were feared during World War I and World War II because of the potential threat they posed to military personnel from downed aircraft and sunken ships.

The whitetip shark can reach a life expectancy of 25 years as well as a maximum size of 2 meters 10. This carnivorous shark eats benthic fish (which live on the bottom) such as parrotfish, octopus, surgeonfish , moray eels and lobsters whose smell and vibrations he captures.

Oceania whitetip shark

During the day, this benthic shark spends its time resting in underwater caves or on sandbanks, between 8 and 40 meters deep and often accompanied by its congeners. In captivity, he is curious about the aquariologists who care for him and who swim 🏊 with him.

This shark is found in the reefs and lagoons of tropical and subtropical waters including the Indo-Pacific, the Red Sea and the coasts of Oceania. Their identifying features include their white-tipped first dorsal, pectoral, pelvic, and caudal fins, as well as their long, paddle-like pectoral fins.

This species of shark is considered Least Concern, but like all other sharks, this species is almost categorized as vulnerable in the Red List 🔮 of endangered species.

Whitetip Shark Swimming in Barrier Reefs in Oceania

9) The Blue Shark (Prionace Glauca)

Blue sharks take their name from their coloring: They have dark blue backs, light blue sides and white undersides, which is why they are also called "Blue Skin" . The largest blue shark on record was just over 3.50 meters long, although rumor has it it got bigger. It is a slender, large-eyed, small-mouthed shark that lives in temperate and tropical oceans around the world.

It lives to be around 18 years old and can reach a weight of 180 kilograms. In the water, it is found up to 350 meters deep although it has already been seen at 750 meters! The blue shark is the most common shark species in the waters of the globe 🌐 because it can adapt and go in almost all marine environments except in polar areas.

Blue Shark in the Sea Surrounded by Dark Water

Despite its large presence, the blue shark is a solitary shark that occasionally occurs in same-sex groups. It feeds mainly on cuttlefish, squid, other sharks and fish, which drives it to migrate thousands of kilometers in pursuit of schools of fish such as herring, sardines, etc.

This shark is a threatened species like its congeners by sport 🎣 and industrial fishing when it gets stuck in boat nets and it is also threatened by its fishing for its fins. Fortunately, in Australia, trawlers have a professional diver in their crew who checks the installation of driftnets. When the fish are caught, the diver goes into the water to direct the sharks that were accidentally caught to the exit, to avoid being killed.

Baby Blue Shark Swimming with Fish

10) Hammerhead Sharks (Sphyrnidae)

There are several species of hammerhead sharks , which are part of the family Sphyrnidae . These species include the winged shark, mallet shark, scalloped hammerhead shark, sword shark, great hammerhead shark, and bonnet shark.

Their heads with such particular shapes make this species of shark quite well known to all with its "T" shaped head. This shape gives them great visual range 👀 , which makes them easier to hunt. Its diet consists of schooling fish, rays, shrimp, crustaceans and cephalopods in general.

Hammerhead Shark at the Bottom of the Ocean

These sharks live in tropical and warm temperate oceans around the world and in shallow waters such as coastal waters less than 20 meters deep. Common hammerhead sharks can reach 4 meters as an adult and weigh 400 kilograms. Unlike this hammerhead shark, the great hammerhead shark can measure up to 5.50 meters and weigh up to 1,000 kilograms and live up to 37 years!

11) The Nurse Shark (Ginglymostoma Cirratum)

Nurse sharks are a nocturnal species that prefer to live on the ocean floor and shallow coasts up to 130 meters deep in tropical waters. This shark often seeks shelter in caves and crevices. They are found in the Atlantic Ocean from Rhode Island to Brazil and off the coast of Africa and in the Pacific Ocean they are found from Mexico to Peru. The nurse shark can reach 4.50 meters in length.

We recognize him with his flat head and his small eyes specific to his way of life. It eats bony fish, carrion, sea urchins but also snails and seaweed! To find its prey in the dark bottom of the ocean at night, it uses its barbels and its highly developed sense of smell.

Nurse Shark in the Night that Hunts

Nurse sharks are so called because of the noise they make when sucking up their prey, which sounds like babies sucking on a pacifier đŸŒ. They are also called sleeper sharks because they can spend more than 20 hours a day resting and sleeping.

12) The Black Tip Reef Shark (Carcharhinus Melanopterus)

Blacktip reef sharks are easily identified by their blacktip fins (bordered in white). These sharks can reach a maximum length of 2 meters, but they are usually between 1 and 1.80 meters long.

They are found in the warm, shallow reef waters of the Pacific Ocean (including off Hawaii, Australia), the Indo-Pacific, and the Mediterranean Sea. Unlike its cousin the feeding shark, this shark is what is called an active swimmer , it must continuously swim to circulate the water 💧 in its gills.

Pointe Noire Reef Shark in Water

The blacktip shark with its habit of living in shallow waters when young can tan to protect its skin from the sun, as can the nurse shark. It has a top speed of 37 km/h which it can reach very quickly to pounce on its prey and eat it. Its diet consists of fish, crustaceans, cephalopods, molluscs and even sometimes birds!

13) The Bull Shark or Sand Tiger (Carcharias Taurus)

The sand tiger shark is also known as the bull shark , gray nurse shark , and cloven-toothed shark . This shark can reach a length of about 3 meters and weigh about 200 kilograms. The sand tiger shark has a flattened snout and a long mouth with jagged-looking teeth.

The sand tiger shark's back is light brown to greenish and its underside is pale. They may have dark spots. They are found in relatively shallow waters (about 2 to 220 meters) in the Atlantic Ocean from Canada to Brazil, in the Pacific Ocean from Japan to New Zealand, and in the western Mediterranean Sea.

Sand Tiger Shark with Massive Body and Big Teeth

The sand tiger shark has a body that becomes particularly massive with age (it can live to be just over 20 years old). Despite its massive appearance and its mouth full of teeth đŸŠ· which give it an aggressive air, the bull shark is not aggressive towards humans, just like a large number of sharks!

14) The Lemon Shark (Negaprion Brevirostris)

The lemon shark 🍋 gets its name from its light, brownish-yellow skin which makes it easily recognizable from other sharks. Their color allows them to blend in with their habitat, near the sand at the bottom of the water, which makes them easier to hunt. It can live up to 25 years and travels in subtropical waters around the Atlantic and Pacific coasts.

The female brings her young into the world in the mangrove to prevent other sharks from eating her young, however, it is a species of shark that is most often found in shallow waters. This species of shark can reach 3 meters 40 for about 180 kilograms, which makes it imposing and impressive, yet it almost never attacks humans.

Lemon Shark with its Congeners and Fish on It

15) The Brownbanded Bamboo Shark (Chiloscyllium Punctatum)

The brown-banded bamboo shark is a relatively small shark found in shallow waters 🏝. Females of this species have been found to have an amazing ability to store sperm for at least 45 months, giving them the ability to fertilize an egg without having access to a mate.

The brown-banded bamboo shark circulates in the waters of the western Indo Pacific. It lives around Japan, north of Australia in coral reefs where it can feed in abundance! It is often found in waters up to 85 meters deep.

Brownbanded Bamboo Shark on the Sand at the Bottom of the Sea

This species of cat sharks has barbels around its nose for easy navigation and bands of color that make it easy to recognize which are the origin of its name. It measures between 1 meter and 1 meter 20 in length which makes it a small shark 🩈 . With its small size, it can live up to about 20 years.

16) The Bigmouth Shark (Megachasma Pelagios)

The bigmouth shark species was discovered in 1976 and only about 100 sightings have been confirmed since (102 according to the IUCN ) . It is also called a big mouth shark or a megamouth shark and its name (as you might have guessed) comes from the size of its huge mouth filled with small teeth.

This is a relatively large, dark gray colored, filter-feeding shark believed to live in the Atlantic, Pacific, and Indian oceans and possibly all tropical waters along the continental shelf. This species of shark can measure from 4 meters to 7 meters 10 and weigh up to 750 kilograms ! It swims slowly with its mouth wide open 😁 in waters 200 meters deep to filter its prey just like the whale shark or the basking shark.

Megamouth Shark or Bigmouth Shark or Bigmouth Shark

It sometimes feeds on small fish, jellyfish and plankton. Scientists believe that it has microorganisms in its lips that attract plankton. It is also one of the only sharks that migrates from the surface to the depths in a programmed way. During the day, to follow its prey, it stays in deep water several hundred meters and at night it goes to the surface.

17) The Greenland Shark (Somniosus Microcephalus)

Just behind the great white shark, the Greenland shark is the second largest carnivorous shark đŸ„© with a maximum size of almost 7 meters and a weight of around 1000 kilograms. It is one of the only sharks to live all year round in the polar waters of the North Atlantic. This species of shark often lives at depths of around 200 to 400 meters, but the oldest specimens can go down to 1000 meters deep during the day and rise more to the surface at night.

Their life in depth makes them difficult to study by scientists, but yet we know that they grow about one centimeter per year during their whole life and considering their rather large size, we can imagine that they live very long. This is indeed the case of the Greenland shark , which can live for more than 400 years according to scientists' approximations using carbon 14. In addition, we know that individuals can wait until they are 150 years old before having a first offspring which can accommodate up to 10 little ones.

Greenland Shark with a Diver Beside

18) The Goblin Shark or Goblin Shark (Mitsukurina Owstoni)

The prehistoric-looking goblin shark 🩖 lives between 20 and 1300 meters deep in waters around the world on underwater mountains and canyons as well as on the continental slope. This shark, called goblin shark or goblin shark is little known to scientists because only a few specimens could be captured and studied. With its long, flattened snout and jaw filled with nail-like teeth, this shark from the abyss is unlike any other species of shark.

It generally measures between 3 and 4 meters for a weight of around 200 kilograms . With its small fins and flaccid body, the goblin shark is quite slow, but it knows how to be quick and efficient with its retractable jaw to hunt prey like fish, crustaceans and cephalopods.

Goblin Shark or Goblin Shark


Now that you know a few species of sharks out of the 400 existing ones in more depth , you can discover our shark stuffed animals . Whether it's for exploring the bottom of the ocean or sleeping with it, children love it!

Shark Stuffed Toys Plush Kingdom


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