10 Short Facts about Basking Sharks

1) The Pilgrim shark (Cetorhinus maximus) is a species of Elasmobranchii lamniform of the Cetorhinidae family.

2) It is the second largest fish in the world and reaches 10 meters in length and four tons of weight.

3) Although its silhouette resembles that of a hunter shark, with hydrodynamic shape and sharp snout, it feeds by filtering the water.

4) It swim with the mouth open until it is round and filters the water through large gills.

5) It moves very slowly.

6) Often spotted near the coast, pilgrims are a frequent target of ecotourists, as they are commonly seen on the surface and are also very tolerant of the presence of man.

7) As several species of sharks, the pilgrims, primarily by the factors mentioned above, have been the subject of intense hunting by fishers.

8) Its enormous size made them the last in highly profitable animals for commercial fishing boats.

9) Only one of them can generate up to a ton of meat and 400 liters of oil, and his liver is believed to be rich in vitamins, can represent up to 25% of the total weight of the animal.

10) For their great persecution and exploitation in the past, Basking Sharks are now protected by law in most countries.

By Greg Skomal / NOAA Fisheries Service - Basking Shark (in English). NOAA Fisheries Service. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration., Public Domain, Link