Shark Food Habits

by Guest1091  |  12 years, 9 month(s) ago

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Shark Food Habits Studies - I was recently questioned as to the eating habits of sharks. And though there are various breeds of shark and their eating habits vary. i thought I'd write a bit about the eating habits of sharks so that we could have detailed discussions about this topic.

While sharks are known and feared for their occasional attacks on humans, the majority of species prefer a diet of small fishes and invertebrates. A few (like the adult white shark) appear to prefer larger prey such as marine mammals, large fishes and other species of sharks. Some, like the tiger shark and blue shark, even include seabirds in their diets.

Thresher Shark
The following prey items have been identified: northern anchovy, Pacific sardine, Pacific mackerel, California barracuda, Pacific hake, pelagic red crab, louvar, grunion, jack mackerel, shortbelly rockfish, market squid, and euphausiids.

Mako Shark
The prey of the shortfin mako is known to include a variety of pelagic fishes including mackerels, bonito, anchovies, herrings, grunts, lancetfishes, cod, salmon, dolphinfishes, small sharks and squid.

Blue Shark
n coastal waters off the U.S. West Coast, blue sharks reportedly feed on anchovy, mackerel, hake, dogfish, squid and pelagic. Elsewhere also known to feed also on small sharks and seabirds.

White Shark
According to Compagno (1984), large white sharks above 3 m long tend to prey heavily on marine mammals, while smaller sharks below 2 m long generally feed on bony fishes and small sharks. In-between sizes evidently feed on a mix of both. It has been pointed out that the tooth shape of juveniles and sub adults is longer and narrower than that of adults, which allows them to grasp small bony fishes and elasmobranchs, but lacks the cutting ability of the broader tooth of the adult. The smaller young are also considered more agile with better turning abilities with which to better capture quickly moving fish prey. Juvenile northern California white sharks are known to feed on California bat ray, spiny dogfish, leopard shark, soupfin shark, smoothhound sharks, lingcod, Pacific sardine, king salmon, Pacific hake, white seabass, rockfishes, and cabezon, while the adults feed heavily on northern elephant seals, also harbor seals and California sea lions and occasionally some fishes and crab, including Pacific hake and sharks (including the basking shark)and Cancer spp crabs. White sharks are also known to attack northern fur seals, Steller sea lions, sea otters and leatherback sea turtles, but these are not considered regular diet items.

 Tags: food, habits, Shark



  1. Aalia
    so pretty much, white sharks are the ones we as humans should be scared off?

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