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Frilled Shark

Posted on: March 27, 2010

Above the Frilled Shark

1. The frilled shark is a dark brown or grey eel color and the six gill slits make it a wired looking shark from most sharks. It’s dorsal fin is small, anal fin large and the tail fin is highly asymmetric and the dorsal part almost unnoticeable. Its teeth are small, tricuspid and very sharp. Mature males can grow to be 1 meter (3.3 ft) – 1.1 meters (3.6 ft) in length and females can grow to be 1.4 meters (4.6 ft) – 1.5 meters (4.9 ft).  It has been recorded at up to 2 meters (6.6 ft) in length

2. The frilled shark is a species of deep-sea shark in the shark family this shark is known as a “living fossil”. It was long thought to be the only member of its family until in 2009. The frilled shark was thought to be extinct itself until it was discovered alive in Japanese waters in the 19th century. On January 21, 2007 a specimen was found alive off the coast of Japan near the Awashima Marine Park in Shizuoka, southwest of Tokyo. The shark was captured but was not adapted to live in the warm, shallow water that it was moved to. The specimen died soon after capture. Is worldwide, but they are very rarely found in shallow water. They have been reported in all oceans but are mainly found near Norway, South Africa, New Zealand, and Chile. The sharks are usually found at depths of between 50 meters (160 ft) and 1,500 meters (4,900 ft). They typically eat squid, other sharks, and deep water bony fish. The frilled shark is sometimes referred to as a living fossil partly because the species has changed little since pre-historic times.

3. The reproduction is not well-understood, but like many other sharks they bear live young with litter sizes of 2 to 12 pups, although the average is six pups. Frilled sharks have the longest gestation period currently known among animals since it remains pregnant for 3.5 years before giving birth.

4. Frilled sharks appear regularly in the catches from bottom trawling and when caught are used as food or for fishmeal. On January 21, 2007, staff at Awashima Marine Park in Shizuoka, southwest of Tokyo, were alerted by fishermen to a ‘strange eel-like fish with needle-like teeth’. The fish was identified as a pregnant female 1.6 m frilled shark and was captured by park staff who were concerned that the shark appeared to be unhealthy. They took it out of the water and put it into a salt water tank where they filmed it and took pictures of it. The shark died a few hours after capture. This rare surface appearance of a frilled shark has been attributed to the animal being unable to live in the warmer temperature water. The frilled shark living in the colder deep ocean water.

All of this info is from


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