Sharks have been around for 100 million years. When you think of sharks, you think of scary man eating predators, however the biggest sharks only eat plankton! Here are some facts you didn’t know about sharks!
There are over 400 different species of sharks and the biggest shark is the Whale shark. Weighing up to 21 tons and can grow up to 40 meters. In comparison, the smallest shark is the dwarf lanternshark, which weights only 0.5 ounces and grow up to 21.2 cm! Sharks can live up to 6,600 feet below the surface and a shark can grow and lose 20,000 teeth in its lifetime.
The practice of finning sharks is rapidly declining the population of sharks. Every hour, 11,000 sharks are killed due to overfishing or killed for their fins. Finning is a serious crime and has been banned from many countries. Due to finning, the shark population has decreased 90 percent in the last 15 years. Shark fins are popular in Asia, because of a tradition dish called shark fin soup. A bowl of shark fin soup in the United States can cost about $80 per bowl.
A shark’s health is incredible and as a result, their body is often studied to help us with health studies. Since sharks never get tumors, humans study shark’s blood to find cures for diseases.
Chances of being killed by a shark are very slim. The deer population has killed the most people in the United States last year. Deer has killed 130 people in the last year, compared to sharks killing 5 people. Bees, cows, dogs, and pigs are all other animals that are more likely to kill you than sharks!