September 24, 2021

A 390-year-old Greenland shark has been found alive in the artic!


The Greenland shark or "the grey shark" is one of the biggest and oldest breeds of shark which is estimated to live for more than 500 years. Scientists have revealed that Greenland sharks are the longest living invertebrates and recently a Greenland shark was found in the artic by researchers which are believed to be around 390 to 400 years old. 

Habitat and Characteristics 


These majestic sharks are found in the deep arctic ocean around Greenland and some regions of the North Atlantic ocean of Norway and Canada. 

Greenland sharks are great divers and swim in deep-sea up to 2000 meters of depth. The exact population of these gigantic sharks is not known as it is very difficult to find these in the ocean. The first Greenland shark was first filmed after 1995 and before that, it took years of expedition and research to search for them. 

Greenland shark is quite big close to a great white and some are found to be even bigger. The length of these sharks ranges from 2.5 to 4.7 meters. These can weigh around 700 to 1000 kilograms. 
Greenland sharks have sensory cells close to their jaws which help them to find prey. 

Their acute sense of smell can sense a tiny drop of blood from 100 kilometers away. These are not very choosy when it comes to food and eat whatever these can fit in their mouth. These are called scavengers of the deep sea as no dead fish or decaying matter is left behind by these fish and spend most of the time filling their giant belly. These mostly prefer cold water ranging from -1 to -10 degrees.


                                         

Greenland Shark 
    Image Source-  Google | Image by -  Flickr

Conservation of Greenland shark 


Greenland shark is listed as a “Nearly Threatened” species by IUCN due to extensive hunting for its body parts especially its liver oil and other organs that fetch a hefty amount in the black market. Greenland sharks were hunted for their meat which is quite popular along the regions of Greenland and Norway. 

In Norway around the 19th century, Greenland sharks were considered a nuisance for the local fishery industry and hence several thousand were caught and killed every year. But now conservations efforts are being made to protect the leftover population. 

Since these beautiful creatures live in the deep ocean far away from human interactions, very little is known about Greenland sharks but recent studies showing these sharks as the longest living invertebrates have made protection of Greenland a topic of concern for researchers.

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