Sharks & Rays

FEATURES

Photo
Sharks come in all sizes. The largest is the whale shark , which has been known to get as large as 18 meters (60 feet). The smallest fits in your hand. And the great...
For the last 150 years, paleontologists have debated the origins of the great...
The smallest shark, a dwarf lantern shark ( Etmopterus perryi ) is smaller than...
What is scarier: sharks or extinction? This video from Save Our Seas puts...

LATEST POSTS

An X-ray image of a Monterey skate ( Raja montereyensis ) reveals a spine that extends like a tail out from the pelvic fin. The skeletons of skates, rays, chimaeras, and sharks are made of cartilage, rather than bone. Scientists...
"Tens of millions of sharks are killed each year, often only for their fins...
The smallest shark, a dwarf lantern shark ( Etmopterus perryi ) is smaller...

LEARN MORE

There are more than 500 species of sharks swimming in the world’s ocean. Yet when most people think of these cartilaginous...

The Ocean Blog

What would you do if you came face to face with a shark ? Brian Skerry lives for these moments and is ready with his camera. Here he is seen photographing a large tiger shark on the seafloor near the...
Great White Sharks are stealthy hunters and the secret is in their skin. Shark skin is covered by tiny flat V-shaped scales, called dermal denticles, that are more like teeth than fish scales. These...
Great White Sharks ( Carcharodon carcharias ) are powerful swimmers, capable of going 50 kph / 35 mph. They can migrate long distances, from Hawaii to California, and from South Africa to Australia...
Three bar jacks and a female tiger shark, nearly 4-meters long, swim off the coast of the Bahamas in this image captured by National Geographic photojournalist Brian Skerry. For nearly 30 years,...
An array of teeth from the sand tiger shark Carcharias taurus . The Smithsonian has the largest collection of shark teeth in the world, with more than 90,000 fossil shark teeth. More about sharks and...
A scalloped hammerhead Sphyrna lewini at Isla del Coco, Costa Rica. Illegal shark fishing along with increasing demand for shark fin soup has led to the removal of 95% of endangered scalloped...
Omoo, a Great White Shark ( Carcharodon carcharias ), carries a satellite tag that sends information daily about her movements across the Pacific. Follow her migration real-time . More about the...
A lemon shark pup swims through a shallow mangrove forest off the coast of Bimini Island in the Bahamas in this image captured by National Geographic photojournalist Brian Skerry. For nearly 30 years...
CREDIT: © Mary Parrish/Smithsonian Institution 1. Respect Your Elders Sharks have a long and impressive lineage. Ancient sharks were cruising the ocean 400 million years ago—long before dinosaurs...
Long before great white sharks appeared, much larger ancestors roamed the ocean. This giant ancient shark -- the Giant Megatooth ( Carcharodon megalodon ) -- was probably big enough to eat a whale.
It's illegal to hunt threatened species such as the Dusky shark, but still tens of millions of sharks are taken each year for their fins—in high demand as a delicacy in China. Inside his laboratory...
Large numbers of grey reef sharks ( Carcharhinus amblyrhynchos ) were observed at Jarvis Island, an uninhabited Pacific island, during the 2010 Pacific RAMP expedition of the NOAA Ship Hi'ialakai ...
Gray reef sharks ( Carcharhinus amblyrhynchos ) are known for being active at night. They are considered Near Threatened by the IUCN Red List due to fishing and the loss of their coral reef habitat...
Grey reef sharks ( Carcharhinus amblyrhynchos ) are among the most versatile and tough predators on a Pacific coral reef, but they are also among the most vulnerable species, as they are threatened...
The sea's largest fish has been a mystery until recent decades. Thanks to electronic tags, researchers are uncovering some of the secrets of the whale shark ( Rhincodon typus Smith, 1828 ). One...
A thresher shark’s long tail fin helps not only its swimming ability, but also its ability to hunt. It can use the fin to herd and trap schooling fish by swimming in increasingly smaller circles...
Manta rays are related to sharks, but have quite a different reputation among humans. They are often called the gentle giants of the sea because of their curious nature and graceful movements. This...
Subscribe to Sharks & Rays