Sharks (Selachii) are one of the oldest animal species on earth having outlived the dinosaurs with fossil records dating them back 400 million years. Most sharks live in saltwater environments, although two species can survive in freshwater and saltwater. In their ecosystems, the carnivorous shark is usually the top of their food chain, but are being threatened by human activities and hunting. The largest fish in the world is the Whale Shark, capable of growing to 40 feet (12.2 m) in length. Sharks have multiple rows of teeth that are embedded in their gums instead of their jaws, and are constantly losing and replacing their teeth—sharks can lose and replace up to 30,000 teeth in their lifetime.

How many bones do sharks have?

Sharks do not have any bones in their bodies, as their skeleton system is made up of cartilage and connective tissue. This classifies them as Chondrichthyes fish. Cartilage is flexible and has about half of the normal density found in bones.

What do sharks eat?

The diet of a shark varies from shark to shark depending on the species, habitat, and available prey. There are over 400 species of sharks. Most sharks are carnivorous and predators, while some are planktivorous. Sharks aren’t picky and are able to adjust their diet to what is available in order to survive.


How do sharks sleep?

It is not known if sharks are able to sleep, but they do seem to have periods of rest. Sharks need to keep water moving over their gills to receive oxygen. Some sharks need to keep moving all the times to keep water over their gills, while others have spiracles, an opening behind each eye, that allows them to breath while they are still.

Sharks

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Greenland Shark
Comparison illustration of the size of a Greenland Shark to a typical person

The Greenland Shark (Somniosus Microcephalus), also referred to as the gurry shark, is a rare species of shark that has a short-rounded snout, small eyes, and between 48 to 52 teeth. Male Greenland sharks are smaller than female sharks. Greenland sharks live in the northern Atlantic and Arctic Ocean.

Greenland Sharks typically eat fish such as sharks, skates, eels, herring, capelin, arctic char, cod, rosefish, and sculpins. They commonly have 10 offspring at a time and are independent since birth. Greenland sharks have the longest known lifespan of all vertebrate species at up to 500 years. Greenland sharks are currently near-threatened by extinction due to hunting by humans.

Greenland Sharks have a total length between 12’-24’ (3.7-7.3 m) and an overall weight in the range of 1950-2250 lb (885-1020 kg). The typical lifespan of the Greenland Shark is a lengthy 300-500 years.

Scaled collection of drawings of Greenland Shark in various poses
The Greenland Shark (Somniosus Microcephalus), also referred to as the gurry shark, has a short-rounded snout, small eyes, and between 48 to 52 teeth. Male Greenland sharks are smaller than female sharks. Greenland sharks live in the northern Atlantic and Arctic Ocean.

Greenland Sharks have a total length between 12’-24’ (3.7-7.3 m) and an overall weight in the range of 1950-2250 lb (885-1020 kg). The typical lifespan of the Greenland Shark is a lengthy 300-500 years.

Scaled collection of drawings of Greenland Shark in various poses
Greenland Shark
Height:
Width:
Length:
12’-24’ | 3.7-7.3 m
Depth:
Weight:
1950-2250 lb | 885-1020 kg
Area:
Speed
Scientific Name
Somniosus microcephalus
Lifespan
300-500 years

Drawings include:

Greenland Shark side elevation, side (perspective), front, top

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Nurse Shark
Dimensioned comparison drawing of the Nurse Shark compared to an average person

Nurse Sharks (Ginglymostoma Cirratum) are a species of shark that moves slowly, are bottom-dwellers, and have a smooth gray-brown skin that sets them apart from other sharks. They live along the western Atlantic and eastern Pacific oceans. Nurse sharks ranked fourth in the documented shark attacks to humans.

They are nocturnal and rest along the seafloor during the day. The mouth of the Nurse Shark is filled with thousands of small sharp teeth and their diet consists of shrimp and squid. It is not exactly known what their current population trend is as it has been claimed as data deficient.

Nurse Sharks have a total length between 7.5’-10’ (2.3-3 m) and an overall weight in the range of 200-330 lb (91-150 kg). The typical lifespan of the Nurse Shark is 15-25 years.

Set of scaled elevation drawings of the Nurse Shark
Nurse Sharks (Ginglymostoma Cirratum) are a species of shark that moves slowly, are bottom-dwellers, and have a smooth gray-brown skin that sets them apart from other sharks. They live along the western Atlantic and eastern Pacific oceans. Nurse sharks ranked fourth in the documented shark attacks.

Nurse Sharks have a total length between 7.5’-10’ (2.3-3 m) and an overall weight in the range of 200-330 lb (91-150 kg). The typical lifespan of the Nurse Shark is 15-25 years.

Set of scaled elevation drawings of the Nurse Shark
Nurse Shark
Height:
Width:
Length:
7.5’-10’ | 2.3-3 m
Depth:
Weight:
200-330 lb | 91-150 kg
Area:
Speed
Scientific Name
Ginglymostoma cirratum
Lifespan
15-25 years

Drawings include:

Nurse Shark side elevation, side (perspective), front, top

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Thresher Shark
Dimensioned comparison drawing of the Thresher Shark compared to an average person

The Thresher Shark (Alopias Vulpinus) is a shark species known for its extremely long tail that they use while hunting for food. They can be found along the coasts of North America and Asia in the Northern Pacific Ocean. Thresher Sharks typically eat meat, liver, skin, and fins.

They are not often involved in shark attacks, but are hunted for their skin that is turned into leather and the oil in their liver that can be used for vitamins. Thresher sharks have been identified as vulnerable to extinction since the year 2007.

Thresher Sharks have a total length between 10.5’-20’ (3.2-6.1 m) and an overall weight in the range of 500-775 lb (227-352 kg). The typical lifespan of the Thresher Shark is between 20-50 years.

Set of scaled elevation drawings of the Thresher Shark
The Thresher Shark (Alopias Vulpinus) is a shark species known for its extremely long tail that they use while hunting for food. They can be found along the coasts of North America and Asia in the Northern Pacific Ocean. Thresher Sharks typically eat meat, liver, skin, and fins.

Thresher Sharks have a total length between 10.5’-20’ (3.2-6.1 m) and an overall weight in the range of 500-775 lb (227-352 kg). The typical lifespan of the Thresher Shark is between 20-50 years.

Set of scaled elevation drawings of the Thresher Shark
Thresher Shark
Height:
Width:
Length:
10.5’-20’ | 3.2-6.1 m
Depth:
Weight:
500-775 lb | 227-352 kg
Area:
Speed
Scientific Name
Alopias vulpinus
Lifespan
20-50 years

Drawings include:

Thresher Shark side elevation, side (perspective), front, top

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Blue Shark
Scale illustration of an average Blue Shark with dimensions for height and length compared to a human

The Blue Shark (Prionace Glauca) is a shark with blue skin coloring for which they were named from. They are often found in deep waters all over the world from in different temperatures ranging from tropical to cold. Blue Sharks have a lethargic nature, but can move very quickly if necessary.

Blue Sharks typically feed on small fish and squid, but can take on larger prey if needed. Female and male Blue Sharks generally live in different places until they have to mate. They can live up to 20 years. The Blue shark is considered to be endangered.

Blue Sharks have a total length between 8.5’-13’ (2.6-4 m) and an overall weight in the range of 120-400 lb (54-181 kg). The typical lifespan of the Blue Shark is 15-20 years.

Series of elevation illustrations of the Blue Shark
The Blue Shark (Prionace Glauca) is a shark with blue skin coloring for which they were named from. They are often found in deep waters all over the world from in different temperatures ranging from tropical to cold. Blue Sharks have a lethargic nature, but can move very quickly if necessary.

Blue Sharks have a total length between 8.5’-13’ (2.6-4 m) and an overall weight in the range of 120-400 lb (54-181 kg). The typical lifespan of the Blue Shark is 15-20 years.

Series of elevation illustrations of the Blue Shark
Blue Shark
Height:
Width:
Length:
8.5’-13’ | 2.6-4 m
Depth:
Weight:
120-400 lb | 54-181 kg
Area:
Speed
Scientific Name
Prionace glauca
Lifespan
15-20 years

Drawings include:

Blue Shark side elevation, side (perspective), front, top

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Basking Shark
Comparison illustration of the size of a Basking Shark to a typical person

The Basking Shark (Cetorhinus Maximus) is the second largest shark, after the whale shark. It has a gray-brown coloring with marble-like skin pattern. They are found in all temperate oceans of the world. Basking Sharks do not hibernate, are active all year, and do not stay in one place for more than a couple months.

During the winter, Basking Sharks swim to deeper waters. Basking sharks are filter feeders that feed passively while swimming and typically eat zooplankton, copepods, barnacles, decapod larvae, fish eggs, and shrimp. The Basking Shark is considered to be endangered.

Basking Sharks have a total length between 22’-35’ (6.7-10.7 m) and an overall weight in the range of 8800-13200 lb (4000-6000 kg). The typical lifespan of the Basking Shark is Up to 50 years.

Scaled collection of drawings of Basking Shark in various poses
The Basking Shark (Cetorhinus Maximus) is the second largest shark, after the whale shark. It has a gray-brown coloring with marble-like skin pattern. They are found in all temperate oceans of the world. Basking Sharks do not hibernate, are active all year, and do not stay in one place for long.

Basking Sharks have a total length between 22’-35’ (6.7-10.7 m) and an overall weight in the range of 8800-13200 lb (4000-6000 kg). The typical lifespan of the Basking Shark is Up to 50 years.

Scaled collection of drawings of Basking Shark in various poses
Basking Shark
Height:
Width:
Length:
22’-35’ | 6.7-10.7 m
Depth:
Weight:
8800-13200 lb | 4000-6000 kg
Area:
Speed
Scientific Name
Cetorhinus maximus
Lifespan
Up to 50 years

Drawings include:

Basking Shark side elevation, side (perspective), front, top

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