Are There Sharks in the Great Lakes?

Are There Sharks In The Great Lakes

The Great Lakes is a series of freshwater bodies, located in the Northern United States. These lakes provide a survival habitat to a variety of aquatic life but the question that pops up and makes people curious is that do sharks also live in this habitat. Let’s go through the article to find out that is it possible for sharks to live in freshwater habitats or not.

Are There Sharks in The Great Lakes?

Well, in general, the answer is “No”, sharks do not live in these regions. Other than that many other living species are found thriving in the freshwater habitat. However, there is an exception with a Bull shark which is the only species of shark found living in the Great Lakes.

In Great Lakes Why Do Sharks Not Live?

The reason is that sharks prefer to live in the warm water bodies of the polar, tropical, sub-tropical, and temperate regions. However, the water of the Great Lakes is extremely cold which makes it difficult for the sharks to live there. Further, the freshwater habitat is greatly inhibited by almost all the species of sharks because this habitat doesn’t provide enough food for them to live.

How Does Bull Shark Uphold To Live In The Great Lakes?

Well, Bull sharks are found living in the Great Lakes because of certain adaptions which allow them to thrive in the deep freshwater bodies. The body of a Bull shark can recycle the salt within its body to keep the level of salt in balance, which makes their survival quite easier.

Which Species Lives In The Great Lakes?

Rather than sharks, many species are found living in the Great Lakes, these are:

  • Northern pike
  • Bass
  • Muskellunge
  • Trout
  • Perch
  • Salmon
  • Cappie
  • Suckers
  • Longnose gar
  • Channel catfish
  • American eels
  • Lake sturgeon
  • Bowfin
  • Bluegills

Final Verdict

Sharks are the species that belong to the Class Chondrichthyes which are adapted to live in warm and less salty environments. About the Great Lakes, there are no sharks sighted because the water is extremely cold, and saline and doesn’t contain abundant food for them to thrive comfortably. However, Bull sharks have few exceptions, because of their salt retention ability, their body will be able to opt for the freshwater habitat.

About the author


I am a Scholar and a dedicated content writer. I am on a mission to stamp out the importance of one of the ocean's most fascinating and remarkable creatures, the sharks, and to let people know about their role in keeping the ecosystem in equilibrium.