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Pelagic Thresher Shark

Threat Level:  low

 

 

 

  • PELAGIC THRESHER SHARK

Scientific name.........Alopias Pelagicus

Family name............Alopiidae

 

  • GENERAL DESCRIPTION

The pelagic thresher shark have a curved whip-like caudal fin as long as their bodies, fairly large eyes, small mouths, very narrow head ,with straight forehead and arched profile, no labial furrows. Large pectoral, pelvic, and first dorsal fins,( pelagic thresher's first dorsal fin is closer to the pectoral fins compared to other thresher sharks ) tiny second dorsal and anal fins.

 

  • SIZE

The maximum size of these sharks can grow up to 11 feet long; tail comprises half the total length. The pups are about 3 1/3 feet long at birth.

 

  • TEETH

It has at least 30 rows of small teeth in each jaw; all the teeth bear a distinct cusplet in the tooth notch.

 

  • COLOR

Pelagic threshers have a dark, countershaded body grading from gray above to white on the underbelly.

 

  • FEEDING HABITS

Prey unknown, presumably small fishes and squid.

 

  • SOCIAL BEHAVIOUR

Poorly-known, active, strong swimmer. probably migratory. May repeatedly leap out of the water.

 

  • HABITAT

Pelagic threshers are found in Indo-Pacific: South Africa to Australia, Tahiti, China, Japan, USA, Mexico and Galapagos. They are oceanic, and widespread in tropical and subtropical waters, the pelagic thresher is commonly observed far from land, swimming at the surface. It also frequents the seaward edges of coral reefs and submarine seamounts. Occationally it makes excursions to depths as great as 490 feet.

 

  • LIFE SPAN

Their estimated longevity is 17.4 years for males and 28.6 for females.

 

  • REPRODUCTION

Pelagic threshers are ovoviviparous, embryos are cannibalistic in the uterus and only two live pups are born. No data is available on gestation period.

 

  • SHARK ATTACKS

These sharks are harmless and shy of divers.

 

  • POPULATION REPORT

       Becoming less common in some areas because of heavy fishing.

 

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