With over 500 species of sharks spread around the world’s oceans and rivers, it’s hard to get familiar and know the characteristics of each type. Not only numerous types, but they are here for hundreds of years, even older than trees.
While sharks play a crucial role in maintaining healthy blue oceans, it is important that we know about the types so that we can differentiate and provide them with a suitable environment.
Sharks generally are considered dangerous to humans, and as a result, we indulge in inappropriate behavior rather than treating them with kindness and care.
Though sharks do have an aggressive nature, it’s not the same for all types. With so many varieties, we have all kinds of sharks with different shapes, colors, sizes, behavior, and temperament. So much so that there are shark species that can be taken home as a pet, and they prove to be a good addition to a house aquarium.
This makes it more important to learn about the types of sharks we have. For that, here we are presenting you with the 15 most popular types of sharks around the world.
What are the 15 most popular types of sharks around the world?
The first thought that comes to our minds when we think of a shark is a huge underwater creature with jaws that will tear us to shreds in a matter of seconds. It might happen in the movies, but the real world is so much different. Only a handful of shark species are considered dangerous, and that too attack when they are provoked. For more info, do check out when the shark attacks?
Rest aside, sharks are vital for the ecosystem, and they help maintain the balance of marine life. With that being said, let’s explore the most popular types of sharks we have and get a brief overview of their characteristics.
An adult whale shark can reach a length of 40 feet long; however, they can reach up to a maximum of 65 feet, making it the largest species of shark in the world. With this size, a whale shark can weigh around anything between 40000 to 75000 pounds.
The whale shark is usually found in deep ocean waters, usually in warm oceans such as the Pacific, Atlantic, and Indian Ocean.
Despite their giant size, whale sharks are not aggressive in nature and, therefore, aren’t considered a threat to humans.
Great White Shark
With a size of 15 to 20ft, great white sharks have a weight of around 6600 pounds. Due to their exceptionally keen sense of smell, they are able to detect prey at a great distance. A great white shark’s ability to detect blood in 25 gallons of water, up to three miles away, can be attributed to this. Do not forget to check out whether sharks are deaf or blind, and get your misconceptions cleared.
When it comes to the largest sharks in the ocean, tiger sharks lie in the top 5. They grow as long as 18 feet and weigh as much as 2000 pounds. They are mostly found in tropical and warm water environments and are aggressive predators.
Oceanic Whitetip Shark
Their unique white-tipped fins distinguish them from other sharks. They live deep in the oceans, away from shorelines. They are found in warm and subtropical waters. The aggressive nature of these sharks makes them fierce predators.
Shortfin Mako Shark
Their stunning appearance makes them one of the most captivating and beautiful sharks in the world. Additionally, the other quality that sets them apart is that they are one of the fastest swimming shark species on earth due to their bullet-shaped body. Sharks of the Shortfin Mako family reside in temperate and tropical waters. They reach a length of up to 13 feet long and weigh near 1,220 lbs.
Angel sharks are known for being different from other species when it comes to their habitat, food preferences, and as well as their biology. These creatures are often mistaken for rays due to their unique appearance. Though they live in the waters of Northern Africa, they are rarely seen nowadays and are declared an endangered species.
Among the world’s largest types of sharks, you will always see them swimming as it’s necessary to provide them with a supply of oxygen. Being able to reach a length of 40 feet, the basking sharks weigh around 7 tons.
While they appear threatening due to their large size, basking sharks are not aggressive and can be harmless to divers or snorkelers.
The shark of this type gets their name from the silky texture of their skin. Learn here why sharks are smooth? Rarely seen, the silky sharks are declared endangered by the authorities to protect them from vanishing.
Having the ability to thrive in seawater and as well as freshwater, bull sharks are frequently found globally in warm, shallow waters along shorelines and in rivers. When it comes to their temperament, they are known to be aggressive and might attack if they come in contact.
As the name implies, sharks belonging to this category have a distinctive hammer-like head structure, but it does give them a broad visual range. The great hammerhead sharks fit into the same group.
When you have brownish-yellow colored skin, what do you think would you be called? The same is applied to the lemon shark; the name is given due to their distinctive color. Lemon sharks tend to have poor eyesight; however, when it comes to catching targets, their special sense of smell does wonders.
Having stripes on the skin, the species is referred to as zebra or leopard sharks. They are also regarded as carpet sharks for their intense patterns that resemble carpets. Tropical waters of the Indian oceans are usually where you will find zebra sharks.
Dwarf Lantern Shark
Dwarf lantern sharks can reach a maximum length of 20 centimeters, making them the smallest shark species in the world. Considering the physical characteristics of their natural habitat, they would be unsuitable for captivity despite their small size.
Grey Reef Shark
This class is most often found in surface water near reef drop-offs, as it is one of the most frequently found reef sharks in the Indo-Pacific. While gray reef sharks are considered to be aggressive, they tend to attack people only when threatened.
Most sharks have five gills on the side of their bodies, unlike sevengill sharks which have seven gills. This aspect alone makes them distinct among all shark species. Because the sevengill shark is relatively small and generally finds itself in deep water, it is classified as harmless to humans.
The chances are you might have heard about a few of them already, but now you have got a lot to say when it comes to the 15 most types of sharks around the world. Lucky you are since not everyone has the information you have now. Can’t wait to have a glaze? Check out where you can find the most sharks in Florida? If you were planning to have a trip to Shark’s Cove, do check out everything you need to know as there might be no sharks in Shark’s Cove.