They occasionally hunt in groups, and have even been known to attack full fishing nets. Smalltooth sand tigers have been caught at widely scattered locations throughout the world, indicating a possibly circumtropical distribution. In the Mediterranean, smalltooth sand tigers occur at depths less than 250 m (820 ft), including at depths accessible to divers. [9] Juveniles are uniform in color with darker fin margins, while adults often exhibit dark spots or blotches that vary widely in pattern, size, and density. I use mine 4-5 days each week on the beach and especially in the surf. The coloration is gray to gray-brown above and lighter below. There is no such thing as an extremely small shark species. Both sexes only live about 7 years and due to their ability to live in captivity, many spend their lives in public shark aquariums. In contrast to its formidable size and appearance, this shark is harmless, having never been known to behave aggressively towards humans. Love it. Each tooth has a narrow, tall central cusp flanked by two or three pairs of lateral cusplets. Some types of shark are quite small species of fish. This species is thought to be ovoviviparous with oophagous embryos like other mackerel sharks. var js, fjs = d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0]; Unlike most shark species, the Sand Shark only gives birth to 1 to 2 live pups at once. The Sand Shark is also known as the Sand Tiger Shark (US and UK), the Grey Nurse Shark (Australia) and Ragged Tooth Shark (Africa). [9], Adult smalltooth sand tigers have no known predators, though they are bitten by cookiecutter sharks (Isistius brasiliensis). Sand tiger sharks, also known as gray nurse sharks, have a deceivingly ferocious look. In the eastern Atlantic Ocean, it is known from the Bay of Biscay south to Morocco, including the Mediterranean Sea, the Azores, and the Canary Islands. International Union for Conservation of Nature, "An exceptional coastal upwelling fish assemblage in the Caribbean Neogene", 10.1666/0022-3360(2001)075<0732:AECUFA>2.0.CO;2, "Biology of the Bumpytail Ragged-Tooth Shark (Odontaspis ferox)", "Species description of, ReefQuest Centre for Shark Research: "Biology of the Ragged-Tooth Shark" (,, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, This page was last edited on 23 October 2020, at 16:08. 2020 National Geographic Partners, LLC. © 1996-2015 National Geographic Society, © 2015- Determine if these sentences have parallel structure. [5], A phylogenetic study based on mitochondrial DNA, performed by Naylor et al. Although this species is widespread and is not widely fished for food, it has one of the lowest reproduction rates of all sharks and is susceptible to even minimal population pressure. [9] The fins, jaws, and cartilage are also of value. [10], Typically regarded as a deepwater species, smalltooth sand tigers have been caught down to 880 m (2,900 ft). Delaware Bay is an important “pupping area” and nursery for sand tiger sharks, and they are commonly hooked. They are found in warm or temperate waters throughout the world's oceans, except the eastern Pacific. [3][9], Encounters with divers have shown that, despite their size, smalltooth sand tigers are docile and do not react aggressively even when closely approached. Despite their rows of ragged teeth and vicious appearance, sand tiger sharks are actually rather docile, usually attacking humans only in self-defense. The smalltooth sand tiger has a bulky body with a long, bulbous, slightly flattened snout. [3], Compared to the grey nurse shark, the dentition of the smalltooth sand tiger is less robust and lacks specialized cutting and crushing teeth, suggesting that it tends to tackle smaller prey. Their staple is small fish, but they will eat crustaceans and squid as well. Sand sharks a/k/a sand tiger, grey nurse and ragged tooth. Villaviencio-Garayzar (1996) described a 3.6-m (11.8 ft) female from the Gulf of California that contained "hundreds of ova" in her right ovary, which would support the embryos being oophagous. Most types of sharks are fearless hunters that top of the oceans’ food chain. Catch records suggest this species may cover long distances in oceanic waters along underwater ridges or "hopping" between seamounts. The eyes are medium-sized, with large, round pupils (as opposed to slit-like in the grey nurse shark), and lack nictitating membranes.