Sharks & Rays

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Sharks are much older than dinosaurs. Their ancestry dates back more than 400 million years, and they are one of evolution’s greatest success stories. These animals are uniquely adapted to their ocean environment with...
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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...
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Lying in water only a foot deep, I watched the shark meander lazily through the...

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A male great hammerhead shark swims in the Bahamas at sunset. Scientists debate the purpose behind these sharks' hammer-shaped heads. A commonly accepted theory is that the shape allows the shark to scan a wider area of the ocean...
What would happen if we let our fear of sharks lead people to kill them all...
I want snack, so give me cookie! The cookie cutter shark ( Isistius...

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There are more than 500 species of sharks swimming in the world’s ocean. Yet when most people think of these cartilaginous...
Sharks come in all sizes. The largest is the whale shark , which has been known to get as large as 18 meters (60 feet). The smallest fits in your hand. And the great white shark is somewhere in the...
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...
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 (...
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...
Every summer since 1987 (that's right, shark week is 26 years old!) the Discovery Channel has been bringing the ocean to our living rooms with a week-long tribute to all things shark. Here at the...
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 . Learn more about the great white...
Sharks have young in three different ways. After internal fertilization, some species lay a thick egg case that encloses the shark embryo (seen in the photo here). Most species are ovoviviparous,...
Shark nets are trapping and killing dozens of sharks off the coast of South Africa. More about the great white shark can be found in our Great White Shark featured story .
Sharks are much older than dinosaurs. Their ancestry dates back more than 400 million years, and they are one of evolution’s greatest success stories. These animals are uniquely adapted to their...
For many years, shark fin soup has been a popular delicacy at weddings and formal occasions in China. Recently, it has become clear that shark-fin removal is cruel to sharks and severely damages...
Tom Peschak, a photojournalist with the Save Our Seas Foundation, describes the devastating effects shark nets have on ocean life along the South African coastline. The nets were installed to protect...
by Caty Fairclough Sharks have been feared hunters ever since people first observed them swimming in the vast ocean. Yet today, sharks are declining rapidly on a global scale because humans have...
From a distance, Henry the Fish looks like a typical quirky and colorful sculpture you'd find in a small beach town. But when you look up close, Henry begins to change. His bright yellow and red...
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 of a breaching sequence .
“This shark was cruising low along the reef known as Alcyone. Her left eye was glancing up toward other hammerheads when I took this shot from below.” -- Nature's Best photographer, Alan Studley. See...
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...
Three bar jacks and a female tiger shark, nearly 4-meters long, swim off the coast of the Bahamas in this image captured by National Geographic photojournalist Brian Skerry. For nearly 30 years,...
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