10 Short Facts about White Sharks

1) The great white shark exists since the Miocene.

2) The oldest known fossils of the white shark date back about sixteen million years ago.

3) However, the phylogeny of the great white shark remains the subject of debate. The original hypothesis of the origins of the white shark is that it shares a common ancestor with a prehistoric shark, such as Megalodon.

4) The white shark lives on the continental shelf areas, near the coasts, where the water is less deep. It is in these areas where the abundance of light and marine currents generates a higher concentration of animal life, which for this species is equivalent to a more significant amount of food.

5) They are absent from the cold Arctic and Antarctic oceans, despite their high abundance of plankton, fish, and marine mammals. White sharks have an excellent metabolism that allows them to stay hotter than the water around them, but not enough to populate these extreme areas.

6) White sharks are entirely different from being simple “killing machines,” as the urban legend holds of them.

7) In order to capture the massive marine mammals that form the basis of the diet of the adults, the white sharks practise a characteristic ambush: they are located several meters under the prey, that nothing on the surface or near it, using the dark color of its back as camouflage with the bottom and thus becoming invisible to its victims.

8) The orca can be a threat to white sharks. On October 4, 1997, in the waters that bathe the Farallon Islands occurred an attack of a female orca of 6.50 meters known by scientists as Ca2 against a white shark, during which the shark died.

9) The attacks of sharks against human beings are somewhat rare.

10) It is considered that it is more likely to die from a heart attack on the high seas than because of the attack of a shark.

By Terry Goss, CC BY 2.5, Link