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Oceanic whitetip Shark
Scientific Name: Carcharhinus longimanus
This is an active, almost fearless predator known to take turtles, sea birds, stingrays, squid and fish. It is oceanic and highly migratory. Oceanic whitetips are easily distinguished by their large, rounded fins, which are mottled on the edges with white. Newly born sharks have black tips to their fins. Whitetips have very strong teeth, which are triangular with serrated edges. They have grey backs with a white belly.
It is a large, thick-bodied, slow-moving shark with very large, paddle-shaped pectoral fins and white tips on its pectoral, and dorsal fins and tail. It is not closely related to the smaller whitetip reef shark. It can grow to be about 13' (4 m) long, but is usually about 10 feet (3 m) long.
This species is found at all levels in tropical and subtropical waters. It lives far offshore and in depths up to 500 feet (150 m). An open ocean species, they are sometimes found around reefs also.
White tips are active carnivores. They are known to take sea birds, turtles, stingrays and various fish including tunas. They may also consume whale carcasses, or prey on weak individuals. These are considered to be highly dangerous for their habit of eating just about anything that comes in their way. These are hated by fishermen due to the damage they do to the catches. They are generally slow moving, but can move in fast dashes when hunting. Oceanic whitetips tend to follow pods of pilot whales or schools of tuna, in order to feed off the smaller and weaker individuals.
Whitetips have litters of up to 15 pups (the number of pups increases with the size of the mother) after a 1 year gestation period.
They are not considered to be endangered for they are abundant
Statistics: The largest oceanic whitetip recorded was 4m, but on average, females are 2.25m and males 2.10m.
Oceanic whitetip Classification:
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