Q:

How big are sharks?

A:

Quick Answer

The size of a shark depends on its species. The largest living shark, the whale shark, averages 31.82 feet long. The extinct megalodon was even bigger at about 60 feet long. The smallest shark is the dwarf lanternshark, which is only 6.7 inches long.

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Full Answer

There are over 470 species of living sharks. Their primary habitat is the oceans, though bull sharks and river sharks can live in fresh water. Most sharks are carnivorous, but some species feed on plankton. Some shark species hunt in packs and feed cooperatively. Sharks are capable of learning and have been observed investigating novel objects and engaging in play.

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Related Questions

  • Q:

    What are sharks afraid of?

    A:

    Sharks are afraid of dolphins when outnumbered because they like to eat animals that are much smaller than them, including baby dolphins, but adult dolphins will protect their young by trying to kill a shark any time they see one. Dolphins are usually successful at killing the sharks that they find because they attack in groups, ramming their bodies into the shark until it dies.

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  • Q:

    What are some facts about sharks?

    A:

    Sharks are fish, but unlike other fish, their skeletons are made of cartilage rather than bone, and instead of smooth, flat scales they have sharp, tooth-like scales called denticles. Scientists believe that sharks are 200 million years older than the oldest dinosaur, meaning they have been around for over 400 million years.

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  • Q:

    What would happen if sharks became extinct?

    A:

    If sharks became extinct, there would be ecological repercussions, such as small animal extinction, algae overgrowth and coral reef death. Sharks are a crucial part of the marine ecosystem and are necessary for the world's oceans to operate.

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  • Q:

    How do sharks mate?

    A:

    When sharks mate, the male grabs the head of the female with his teeth and inserts pelvic fins called "claspers" into her reproductive area. The male has sacs that are filled with seawater that help to shoot his sperm through the female to ensure reproduction. The two sharks stop swimming and have to stay connected for several minutes. They sometimes fall to the ocean floor in the process.

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