Friday, 28 September 2018 10:30

Top 5 Coolest Sharks Featured

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Goblin Shark

The ugliest shark on this list, the goblin shark is found in the deep, deep waters where looks don’t get you far but having an evil pointy snout and weird extendable jaw makes you the King of the oceans.  Found off the Australian coast (I presume it looks more handsome when surrounded by all those awful Aussie bogans) this shark looks like it could eat an apple through a letter box with its very English teeth, which are literally like regular teeth after a hand grenade went off in your mouth.

Said to eat other bloody sharks, it has translucent skin so the about-to-be-eaten sharks can see exactly where they’re going as they get devoured by this deep-dwelling monster.

Megamouth Shark

A very well-named shark pays homage to this creatures’ unique feature – it’s terrifyingly massive mouth that puts even my ex-wife to shame. It’s also a wearer of a particularly weird expression, which always reminds me of someone who’s just farted a real stinker and is now waiting for everyone else to notice. Again, memories of the ex-wife…

Despite having a mouth you could park a car in, this planktivorous filter feeder (like the whale sharks we have around Koh Tao) eats mostly plankton, which doesn’t seem to have any bearing on its size – they reach 4-5 metres in length and weigh around 1200 kg!

They were discovered around 40 years ago by and since then there’s been less than 100 sightings, making it one of the most mysterious sharks out there.

 

 Hammerhead Shark

Diving with hammerhead sharks is a dream for every single scuba diver out there, I’d wager. One of the more well-known sharks out there, I spent a lot of my childhood dreaming of these bizarre looking creatures, and wondering just why they had such a ridiculously shaped-head (called a cephalofoil) that seemed to defy all rules of what a shark looks like. Now it’s widely believed that the shape improves the vision of the shark, making them capable of seeing both what’s above and below them at the same time, giving them what is essentially 360-degree vision! Unfortunately, that advantage comes at a cost: since their eyes are so far apart, hammerheads suffer from a large blindspot right at the tip of their snouts.

 Cookiecutter Shark

The cookiecutter shark has a name that doesn’t exactly fill you with fear, and as they reach a size of just 50 cm it’s one that I initially thought I could defeat easily in an arm-wrestle…however with a little research I’ve now decided that this shark is one vicious little predator you would not want to mess with!

This nasty piece of work preys on just about every large and medium-sized creature it can find, and is known to eat whales, sharks, dolphins, seals, rays, dugongs and more, yet still won’t even entertain the notion of eating a durian. It eats by latching onto its prey with its upper teeth, which anchor into place and then the lower teeth start munching away, cutting out a round cookie-shaped chunk of flesh – hence the name!

Though rarely encountered by humans, a handful of attacks were reportedly caused by cookiecutter sharks, as well as significant damage to many US Navy submarines. Like I said, not to be messed with! Luckily, they spend most of their time in the very deep parts of the oceans (thought to be 1000s of metres down) and then vertically migrate at night to feed. Night dive anyone?

Bull Shark

They may not get all the headlines (we can thank the ‘Jaws’ movies for that) but the bull shark is THE most dangerous shark in all of the oceans in the world, with more recorded attacks on humans than any other shark known to man. Known to swim in both salt and fresh water, one was even recorded 1100 km from the sea up the Mississippi river - there’s just no escaping these hungry monsters!

Of the thousands of dives I’ve been lucky enough to experience, the ones that I remember more than any other are no doubt those we had with the bull sharks at Chumphon Pinnacle and Sail Rock (close to Koh Tao/Koh Phangan) a few years ago…and hopefully again soon! Being surrounded by 20-30 sharks almost three-metres long, with each weighing around 100kg is certainly not a dive you’ll forget anytime soon. Luckily for all of us here on Koh Tao there was never a single recorded incident when sharing our dives with these sharks – it’s thought the amount of delicious fish available for them to eat meant they were never hungry enough to mess with us divers!

Read 67 times Last modified on Saturday, 29 September 2018 10:01