Blacktip shark


Blacktip shark

Taxobox
name = Blacktip shark
status = LR/nt
status_system = IUCN2.3
trend = down



regnum = Animalia
phylum = Chordata
classis = Chondrichthyes
subclassis = Elasmobranchii
ordo = Carcharhiniformes
familia = Carcharhinidae
genus = "Carcharhinus"
species = "C. limbatus"
binomial = "Carcharhinus limbatus"
binomial_authority = (Müller & Henle, 1839)
range_


range_map_width = 250px
range_map_caption = Range of blacktip shark

The blacktip shark, "Carcharhinus limbatus", is a large shark, native to the continental and insular shelves of tropical and warm temperate seas around the world.

The blacktip is a large fairly stout shark, grey in colour, normally with black-tipped fins. It has a long, narrow, pointed snout, long gill slits, a large first dorsal fin and fairly large second dorsal.

Taxonomy

The blacktip shark was first described by Achille Valenciennes in Müller & Henle (1839) as "Carcharias (Prionodon) limbatus". Other synonyms that have been used are "Carcharias (Prionodon) pleurotaenia", "Carcharias microps", "Carcharias (Prionodon) muelleri", "Carcharias maculipinna", "Carcharias ehrenbergi", "Carcharias aethlorus", "Gymnorrhinus abbreviatus", "Carcharias phorcys", and "Carcharhinus natator". The accepted scientific name is "Carcharhinus limbatus" (Müller & Henle, 1839). The epithet "limbatus" ("bordered") refers to the black tips of its fins.

Behaviour and diet

Like its close relative the spinner shark, "C. brevipinna", the blacktip shark is a fast swimming shark capable not only of breaching, or leaping out of the water, but also of rotating (spinning) several times before re-entering the water. Some consider it non-aggressive and unlikely to attack humans without stimulus, but it is blamed for the majority of shark bites in Florida numbering several dozen a year [ [http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/world/us_and_americas/article4333715.ece Blacktip shark snapped in photo of surfer off New Smyrna Beach, Florida] ] .

There is some evidence of segregation with some populations showing separation between groups of adult males and non-pregnant females on the one hand and pregnant females and young on the other.

Blacktip sharks feed mainly on a wide range of bony fish: sardines, herring, mullet, jacks, and Spanish mackerel, among others; the young of other sharks including dusky sharks; and some cephalopods and crustaceans.

Reproduction

The blacktip shark is viviparous and has a yolk-sac placenta with 1 - 10 pups per litter (4 - 7 as a mean figure). The gestation period is believed to be 10 to 12 months and females are thought to breed every other year.

Scientists have recently confirmed that females of the species are capable of parthenogenesis, or reproduction without fertilization by a male. [" [http://www.cnn.com/2008/US/10/10/shark.virgin.birth.ap/index.html DNA test proves it -- baby shark has no father] ", CNN, 10 Oct 2008] cite news |first=
last=
authorlink=
coauthors=
title='Virgin birth' for aquarium shark
url=http://www.metro.co.uk/weird/article.html?Virgin_birth_for_aquarium_shark&in_article_id=351241&in_page_id=2
publisher=Metro.co.uk
date=2008-10-10
accessdate=2008-10-10
quote=
] Although little is known about this process, it has been confirmed in hammerhead sharks as well.

Importance to humans

Its flesh is used fresh, dried or salted for consumption, its hide is used for leather and its liver for oil. It is occasionally taken as a game fish and often by shore anglers. It has not been indicated in unprovoked attacks against humans but is potentially dangerous.

References

* Leonard J. V. Compagno, "FAO Species Catalogue, Vol. 4, Parts 1 and 2, Sharks of the World", 1984, Rome: FAO
*

External links

* [http://www.flmnh.ufl.edu/fish/Gallery/Descript/Blacktip/Blacktipshark.html Florida Museum of Natural History Ichthyology Department]


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Look at other dictionaries:

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  • blacktip shark — noun widely distributed shallow water shark with fins seemingly dipped in ink • Syn: ↑sandbar shark, ↑Carcharhinus limbatus • Hypernyms: ↑requiem shark • Member Holonyms: ↑Carcharhinus, ↑genus Carcharhinus …   Useful english dictionary

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  • Australian blacktip shark — ] . The flesh has a relatively high mercury concentrationThreatsOf the 1025 chondrichthyan species found worldwide, approximately 300 are found in Australia and over 50% of these Australian species are endemic. Commercial, indigenous,… …   Wikipedia

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  • Blacktip — may refer to:* The blacktip shark, Carcharhinus limbatus . * The blacktip reef shark, Carcharhinus melanopterus …   Wikipedia

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  • blacktip — noun Any of various fish having black colored tips. See Also: Australian blacktip shark, blacktip grouper, blacktip reef shark, blacktip sawtail catshark, blacktip shark, blacktip tope, blacktip trevally, smooth tooth blacktip shark …   Wiktionary


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