The Pygmy shark (Euprotomicrus bispinatus) is a shark that has been found in numerous locations in the Pacific, Indian and Atlantic Oceans. As its common name says, it’s one of the smallest shark species in the world, reaching a meager 27 cm total length; it is said to be the second-smallest after the dwarf lanternshark. Female pygmy sharks can get up to 25 cm (10 in) and males get up to about 22 cm (8.7 in).
As a sleeper shark of the Dalatiidae family, it’s surprising that scientists don’t know much about them. What we do know is pretty cool though, such as this excerpt taken from their IUCN page:
It is a bioluminescent vertical migrator that ascends to or near the surface by night, descending into midwater and possibly to the bottom by day (Hubbs et al. 1967, Last and Stevens 2009, Ebert et al. 2013).
Yes, this shark glows in the dark! And yes, they move up and down the water column to feed! On what? We aren’t exactly sure. We also know that pygmy sharks are ovoviviparous and each litter has about eight pups. And… yeah, that basically covers what we know about pygmy sharks! The IUCN has assessed this animal as Least Concern (LC).
what new #finfact did you learn about this animal?
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TFUI Founder Melissa C. Marquez is author of all animal bios and "Behind the Fins" segments.
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