The question we get the most about the crocodile shark (Pseudocarcharias kamoharai) is if they actually look like crocodiles. Sorry to burst your bubble, but no. So if you were expecting a small croc-looking animal with fins... well, sorry.
You were right with one thing, though: it is small! Only reaching about up to 1.1 metres long and averaging about 4-6 kg in weight, this uncommon shark spends its time in the oceanic pelagic zone and has a circumtropical distribution range. So why is it called a 'crocodile'? Well, it has very sharp teeth... and is know to snap its jaw furiously when taken out of the water. That's where all resemblance stops although they are a grey-brown color on top which sometimes has dark or light blotches. Like most other sharks, they have a lighter underbelly.
Unlike crocodiles, they have a short head and snout, and really big eyes to help it see in the dark; this critter hunts either by night or in the deep sea (they are found to occur 590 metres deep or more). They like to eat fish, squid and shrimp! And like others in its order (Lamniformes), their unborn pups eat one another (eggs and other pups) before exiting the uterus. The IUCN has assessed these animals as Near Threatened (NT).
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TFUI Founder Melissa C. Marquez is author of all animal bios and "Behind the Fins" segments.
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