Sharks & Rays

FEATURES

Slideshow
Sharks are one of nature’s most beautiful—and misunderstood—creatures. When most people think of sharks, they think of unexpecting swimmers being attacked and eaten by a nightmarish creature. But what they don’t know is that...
Slideshow MORE STORIES Slideshow MORE AUDIO / VIDEO
Long before great white sharks appeared, much larger ancestors roamed the ocean...
In this episode of the Podcast of Life , students from Martha's Vineyard...
Blog entry MORE STORIES Blog entry MORE AUDIO / VIDEO
Lying in water only a foot deep, I watched the shark meander lazily through the...

LATEST POSTS

I want snack, so give me cookie! The cookie cutter shark ( Isistius brasiliensis ) is as fearless as they come! This small, 20-inch shark can take on giants like whales and larger sharks, and have even been known to mistakenly...
For many years, shark fin soup has been a popular delicacy at weddings and...
Sharks come in all sizes. The largest is the whale shark , which has been...

LEARN MORE

There are more than 500 species of sharks swimming in the world’s ocean. Yet when most people think of these cartilaginous...
Christian McDonald, the Scientific Diving Safety Officer at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography, tows a surface float at Millennium Atoll in the South Pacific.
The pre-industrial American landscape was once rightly described as a place where “the deer and the antelope roam.” On land, we take it for granted that the plant-eating deer and antelope far...
Great White Sharks breach to hunt -- with split-second timing they grab an unsuspecting seal or sea lion in one swift snatch. Follow the action in this slideshow.
The International Union for the Conservation of Nature ( IUCN ) maintains the Red List of Threatened Species , an inventory of the global conservation status of plants and animals. In a 2010 study ,...
I want snack, so give me cookie! The cookie cutter shark ( Isistius brasiliensis ) is as fearless as they come! This small, 20-inch shark can take on giants like whales and larger sharks, and have...
Sunday, November 21 marks World Fisheries Day , an annual occasion observed in many fishing communities around the world. It’s a great opportunity—even for those of us who do not fish for a living—to...
Guitarfish, rays, and other bycatch are tossed from a shrimp boat in La Paz, Mexico in 2006. Many species caught as bycatch are never monitored, and, insofar as they have important roles in the...
The distinctive form of a winghead shark ( Eusphyra blochii ) is revealed by an X-ray image. The Winghead Shark, one of about ten species of hammerhead sharks, has its eyes set at the tips of its...
Whenever a shark attacks a human, it's headline news. But when a human kills a shark, it goes unreported. Fear keeps many people from caring about sharks. But sharks have more reason to fear us than...
Who should fear whom? Less than ten humans are killed by shark attacks. Yet millions of sharks are killed each year by humans. More about the great white shark can be found in our Great White Shark...
Is it an enormous eel? No—it's a shark! The frilled shark is named for its strange appearance , including a snakelike body, three pronged teeth, and gills that give the impression of a frilly collar...
An oceanic whitetip shark swims near a biologist in the Bahamas in this image captured by National Geographic photojournalist Brian Skerry. For nearly 30 years, Skerry has been swimming with and...
Follow a journey with satellite tags placed on bull sharks and tarpon. Both of these large predatory fish are found in coastal in-shore ecosystems and the two species have similar diets. If given the...
This illustration shows one old idea of what the ancient shark Helicoprion might have looked like. There once was room for many ideas—some more plausible than others—because the only fossils of the...
An array of teeth from the sand tiger shark Carcharias taurus . The Smithsonian has the largest collection of shark teeth in the world, with more than 90,000 fossil shark teeth. More about sharks and...
Save Our Seas scientist Alison Kock tags a Great White Shark ( Carcharodon carcharias ) to gather data about their movements off the coast of South Africa. More about the great white shark can be...
Ever heard of a cookie-cutter shark ( Isistius brasiliensis )? They look like your average shark —sort of menacing and streamlined—but their name comes from how they feed. They eat smaller animals (...
The fossil tooth whorl of the ancient shark Helicoprion , dating back 290 million years before present. For a long time, people didn't know what the shark looked like—but, thanks to a CT scan of a...
Subscribe to Sharks & Rays