Let’s Learn A Little About This Beautiful Animal
The magnificent sharks are a group of elasmobranch fish. Sharks are characterized by their cartilaginous skeleton, pectoral fins that are not fused to the head, and numerous gill slits on the sides of the head. Sharks in the modern-day are the sister group to the rays and are classified within the clade Selachimorpha (or Selachii).
Interestingly, the term “shark” has also been wrongly used to refer to members of the Elasmobranch subclass, who are extinct and are also technically outside the Selachimorpha clade. Noteworthy examples of improper or false classification include Cladoselache, Xenacanthus, and numerous other members of the Chondrichthyes class too.
Diversity And Dynamics
Sharks are diversified species of over 500 kinds and have passed the test to time for more than 420 million years. Sharks exist in different sizes from the small and dwarfed lantern shark (a deep-sea creature sized at only 17 centimeters or 6.7 inches in length) which is also known as Etmopterus perryi among researchers to the whale shark or Rhincodon typus which is the largest fish on the planet. This behemoth is approximately 12 meters or 40 feet long.
All Sharks are found in seas and oceans, most commonly in water bodies that have 2,000 meters or more depth. On most occasions, you will not find a shark living in freshwater, although few known species like the bull sharks and the river sharks are exceptions. The bull sharks and the river sharks are found in both freshwater and seawater.
All sharks have improved fluid dynamics because of the covering of dermal denticles that also protects their skin from parasites and damage. They have replaceable teeth and numerous sets of them too.
Several shark species are apex predators, which means they are at the top of their food chain. Examples of such shark species include the Tiger shark, the Great White shark, Blue shark, Thresher shark, Mako shark and the Hammerhead shark.
Threatened By Humans
Hunting sharks have been infamously popular in recent years. All across the globe, sharks are caught and slaughtered by humans. Numerous shark populations are threatened every day by human activities and sadly since 1970, there has been a devastating decline of shark populations by 71 percent because of overfishing.
Causes Of Shark Hunting And Their Fin’s Significance To Humans
Shark fins have historically been blamed for the deaths of countless of these majestic creatures. They have been exploited for therapeutic and culinary applications (shark fin soup is a popular delicacy in Asia), and numerous sharks even have their dorsal fins severed while still alive, leaving them to endure a cruel and traumatic death.
Apart from the human significance and value put on these fins, they also serve an important role in the shark’s movements in terms of advancing force, balance, and direction.
Shark fins are hard and extended. Ceratotrichias are cartilaginous, non-segmented rods that sustain them. This power and rigidity allow the creature to move efficiently with flexibility, which is incredibly beneficial when chasing fleeing prey.
The Number Of Fins A Shark Has And How They Serve?
Sharks possess five kinds of fins on their bodies. They possess pectoral fins on both sides of their body, pelvic fins nearer to their tail, and one or two dorsal fins, based on the species. Anal fins are not seen in all sharks. Caudal fins are often referred to as a shark’s tail.
Below is an explanation of the various varieties of shark fins.
Sharks have a pectoral fin on each side of their body behind their heads. These are usually elongated and serve to prevent the shark from lowering to the ocean’s bottom as well as to direct the creature.
Pelvic fins are paired fins that can be found further down the body, near the tail. They are located on the shark’s ventral side (or underbelly) and serve as regulators to keep it from drifting to the left or right.
There may be one or two dorsal fins, depending on the species. Because it is located on top of the shark, behind the head, the first dorsal fin is the most visible. This is the fin that is seen by many of us and frequently sticks out of the water.
To prevent the shark’s body from toppling or flipping over, the dorsal fins hold it upright. If a second dorsal fin is present, it is significantly smaller and located further down the body, aligned to the pelvic fin. On their dorsal fins, certain sharks have spines.
Anal fins are not present in all shark species. On the bottom of the body, it is located between the pelvic fins and the tail (the ventral side). These are also utilized for keeping things stable.
Shark tails, or caudal fins, are another name for them. To move ahead, the mammal glides the fins sideways. Backward movement is not possible because of the fin’s design. As a result, if a shark tries to get away from something, it must either glide backward or turn away from the object and continue onward.
To efficiently seek prey, a shark must be able to move quickly without being spotted. Fins are essential for rapid, nimble movements and incredible speed. Their design exemplifies creativity and foresight.
Are There Any Fins On The Back Of A Shark?
Sharks have a huge dorsal fin that helps them maintain balance. They normally have a smaller dorsal fin that extends back towards their tail. They utilize their pectoral fins to guide and propel themselves in the water and then push themselves ahead with their tails.
What Are The Fins On The Top Of A Shark Called?
The upper fins are known as dorsal fins. When there are two dorsal fins, the one closest to the head is considered as the first dorsal fin, while the one behind it is called the second dorsal fin. The visceral region of the fish is located on the stomach or underside of the fish.
The Pectoral Fins
The two fins on the sides of a shark are termed pectoral fins. The primary function of these fins is always to guide directional movement, either vertically or horizontally.
Can A Shark Survive Without A Fin?
When sharks are discarded, they are usually alive breathing. However, without their fins. The sharks sink to the bottom of the ocean or sea and die of exhaustion or become food for other predators because of their inability to swim effectively.
Some countries have prohibited the act, ordering the whole shark to be delivered to port before their fins get removed.
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