Great White Shark Information. Carcharodon Carcharias species classification and other Great White shark related information. Diagram of Gret White shark anatomy.
The Great White Shark - Carcharodon carcharias
Great Whites are fish, but they differ in many different ways. For example, their skeleton is not made of bone, it is made of cartilage. A shark's scales are not broad or smooth like most other fish. They are very rough, like sandpaper!!
Shark's gills are also very different. While the gills of a fish are also covered, the gills of a shark are open. They are called "Gill Slits". Most sharks have 5 slits, but some might have 6 or 7.
Great Whites usually feed on Fishes, other sharks, and most commonly, even marine mammals like sea lions or seals.
Great Whites are the largest predatory fish. They average in size at about 12-16 feet. There really isn't a true "average size" though. Just most sharks tend to grow to about 12 to 16 feet. The Great White's tooth is sharp enough to cut through meat and possibly even wood!! Great Whites are also mostly responsible for nearly all the shark attacks in California. However, most of them are NOT fatal.
There are also many different attack strategies involved in killing its prey. Most of the time, the prey is bitten from a Great White rising from below it. The shark will then carry the prey and then release it to the surface. The prey(presumbly a seal) will then lose a large amount of blood, because of the bite, and then will later die. The Shark then returns to eat the carcas.
A common attack on humans, is when the Shark bites, it will then spit the prey out because the shark will discover that it made a mistake and will then leave it alone.
Here are some ways to avoid a shark attack: Do not splash too much because sharks might possibly think you are a fish that is wounded, therefore it is thrasing around. Do not tease or tempt a shark, even if it is a small ten footer. You would be surprised how a baby Great White can overpower an adult man. Be sure to swim in the shallow water. Most sharks prefer more deeper water. Do not swim if you have
an open cut, or you are bleeding. Sharks can sense blood very well. Avoid large schools of fish, or seals since those are a Great White's favorite food. And most important, do not wear red!! A Great White could possibly mistake you for an injured a seal or fish.
To give an idea of what a GW usually preys upon, think of those cute seals and sea lions (pinnipeds) you often see performing at Sea World. They are the preferred food of the GW - over other fish, other sharks, or even your Aunt Sally.
Seals have highly developed hindflippers and smaller, underdeveloped foreflippers. Sea lions are just the opposite, with highly developed foreflippers and small, underdeveloped hind flippers.
Seals are more likely to be attacked and more often end up lunch for the GW as sea lions tend to escape. This may have to do with their different anatomical structure.