International Whale Shark Research Program Uses NASA Algorithm To Identify, Track Animals

2017-12-06T15:17:13+00:00 December 6, 2017|

Whale shark gliding off Sail Rock in the Gulf of Thailand. (Credit: iStockphoto/Dirk-Jan Mattaar) An international research project tracking whale sharks is being praised as a unique collaboration using 'citizen science' and NASA technology. (From ABC News Australia/By David Weber) -- The project relied on people sending in photos, taken over many years [...]

Human Teeth Traced To Fish Scales, Cambridge Scientists Say

2017-11-21T15:59:46+00:00 November 21, 2017|

Teeth grew from the scales of primitive shark-like fish millions of years ago, research by scientists suggests. Old lineage cartilaginous fish like sharks, skates and rays that have skin which contained small spiky scales or "dermal denticles" may be the key, scientists say.

Alligators Eat Sharks — And A Whole Lot More

2017-11-03T11:55:11+00:00 November 3, 2017|

Alligators don’t just stick to freshwater and the prey they find there. These crafty reptiles can live quite easily, at least for a bit, in salty waters and find plenty to eat — including crabs, sea turtles and even sharks.

First Successful Wild Whale Shark Health Assessments Performed

2017-08-23T14:12:55+00:00 August 23, 2017|

For the first time ever, scientists successfully performed health assessments, including collecting blood and biological samples, taking measurements and attaching satellite tracking tags, to a population of wild whale sharks -- the world's largest fish, classified as "endangered" since 2016. The research advancement, which occurred in Indonesia's remote Cendrawasih Bay, has significant implications for unlocking the mysteries surrounding the overall health of whale sharks -- including the potential impacts of tourism on their health. These details can better inform future conservation policies to protect and encourage their population recovery.

The Ocean’s Fastest Shark Is Being Threatened By Over Fishing

2017-08-11T11:43:30+00:00 August 11, 2017|

A new study using satellite tracking by researchers from Nova Southeastern University's Guy Harvey Research Institute (GHRI), the University of Rhode Island and other colleagues shows that the fishing mortality rate of the shortfin mako in the western North Atlantic is considerably higher than previously estimated from catches reported by fishermen. These data suggest that this major ocean apex predator is experiencing overfishing, raising serious concerns about whether the current levels of fishery catches in the North Atlantic are sustainable.

Fossil Shows New Fish Species That Looked, Ate Like Shark, Scientists Say

2017-08-09T13:13:52+00:00 August 9, 2017|

ELKO, Nev. -- A fossil found in northeastern Nevada shows a newly discovered fish species that scientists believe looked, and ate, like a shark. The fossil is what remains of a bony, sharp-toothed fish that would have been about six-feet-long (1.83 meters) with long jaws and layers of sharp teeth. The type of jaw and teeth on the fish suggest it would have chomped down on its prey before swallowing it whole, like a shark, the Reno Gazette-Journal reported.

Sharks Revealed As The Great Protectors Of Seagrass

2017-07-27T16:40:52+00:00 July 27, 2017|

Sharks, marine scientists say, are often misunderstood, described as ravenous man-eaters. In reality, sharks are critically important to the health of the world's oceans, yet a quarter of all shark species are threatened with extinction. For more than two decades, Florida International University marine scientist Mike Heithaus has been immersed in the world of sharks and other predators that help the sea maintain a delicately balanced food web. Heithaus' work is focused on predators in the waters of South Florida and across the globe in Shark Bay, Australia.

Why Scientists Are Racing To Uncover The Greenland Shark’s Secrets

2017-07-26T10:01:06+00:00 July 26, 2017|

Brace yourself. To human senses, the gelid waters of the Arctic and North Atlantic oceans are beyond chilling. Because sea water is salty, the waters can actually reach temperatures below what we think of as freezing (as low as 28.8 degrees Fahrenheit instead of the usual 32) and remain liquid. Without protective gear, the human body can withstand maybe 15 minutes of these temperatures before succumbing to unconsciousness; 45 minutes before death.

The Megalodon Was The Largest Shark To Have Ever Lived – Now We Know How It Disappeared

2017-07-03T15:24:09+00:00 July 3, 2017|

An artist’s impression of Carcharocles megalodon. (Photo credit: Karen Carr/CC) Large marine megafauna, including megalodon, the largest shark to have ever lived, disappeared during a global extinction event that had previously not been recognized as such. At the end of the Pliocene, between two and three million years ago, the planet entered a [...]

Large Marine Protected Areas Effectively Protect Reef Shark Populations

2017-02-13T16:27:04+00:00 February 3, 2017|

Researchers at Stanford University's Hopkins Marine Station investigated the role of expanded marine protected areas (MPAs) on grey reef sharks and found that the aquatic no-fishing zones were an effective tool for protecting this near-threatened species. Originating 423 million years ago, sharks are a group of predators that span 490 species and still play crucial roles within their ecosystems. We often characterize these top predators as nearly indestructible monsters but, of course, that's far from the reality: They mature slowly, they don't have high numbers of offspring, and they're under serious threat due to the value of their fins.

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