STATES CHRONICLE – According to scientists from the New York Aquarium, NY Bay harbors a shark nursery which is something quite rare and very surprising to see in these waters.
Although we are perfectly aware of the existence of sharks we somehow tend to place them somewhere very deep in the ocean where we can’t see them and more importantly they can’t see us.
Usually sharks are considered to be predators although not all of them are dangerous, or at least not to humans. However, we still prefer them to be far away or behind a glass wall in the aquarium.
So who would have thought that the Great South Bay would be home to sand tiger sharks? Even scientists and veterinarians were surprised to make the discovery. It looks like the bay harbors a nursery for animals up to five years old. Up until that age they live there, eating and growing safe from any predators. Although they are sharks, being babies means they could be in danger.
Researchers have been tracking sharks using acoustic tags and after four years of monitoring, they realized many of them kept coming back into the bay. Sand tiger sharks live of coastlines all around the world were the waters are warm.
Unfortunately, due to overfishing, the sharks are considered endangered in some parts of the world, especially in Australia, whereas the U.S. considers them a “species of concern”. This is why the discovery from the NY bay is so exciting as this means conservationists could help baby sharks survive and return into deeper waters.
The baby sharks are born in the south and migrate to New York waters where they spend their first few years of life. A female shark only gives birth to one or two babies a year, which means their numbers are hardly increasing.
Although these sand tiger sharks are as scary as any other shark, growing up to 10 feet long and showing some quite terrifying teeth, they aren’t aggressive unless provoked, which means they’re not necessarily dangerous to humans. Their main prey is represented by small bony fish.
Now, researchers are trying to find out how many sharks migrate each year to the New York’s Great South Bay and what they feed on as long as they stay there.
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