Ginglymostoma cirratum, the nurse shark, resides in coastal waters in the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans. In the Pacific Ocean, nurse sharks are found in waters off. Ginglymostoma cirratum. These bottom dwelling sharks are usually yellowish-tan to dark brown and, as adults, average around to 8 feet. Reference for: Ginglymostoma cirratum. Source: NODC Taxonomic Code, database (version ). Acquired: Notes: Reference for: Ginglymostoma cirratum.

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Nurse sharks use olfaction to find prey.

Nurse shark

The nurse shark has a wide but patchy geographical distribution along tropical and subtropical coastal waters of the Eastern Atlantic, Western Atlantic, gingymostoma Eastern Pacific. Smallmouth velvet dogfish S. Algae and corals are occasionally found in their stomachs, as well. Nurse sharks have a single litter, which often includes multiple paternities.

Some sharks, however, have a second system based on respiratory pumping of water. Young nurse sharks have been observed resting with their snouts pointed upwards and their bodies supported off the bottom on their pectoral fins. Maximum or average longevity in captivity has not been reported. The mode of hunting is foraging, stalking, and ambushing prey, most ginglymostoms at night.

Castro, ; Ebert, et al. Gestation takes 5 to 6 months.

Help us improve the site by taking our survey. Shark immunity bites back: The Eastern Pacific population has recently been described as a separate species Ginglymostoma unami.

To cite this page: Coral reefs are found in warm, shallow oceans with low nutrient availability. Australian sawtail catshark F. This dual respiratory system is especially important for bottom dwellers such as nurse sharks. The nurse shark is an ovoviviparous species. Cuban ribbontail catshark E. Animals with bilateral symmetry have dorsal and ventral sides, as well as anterior and posterior ends.


Geographic Range Ginglymostoma cirratumthe nurse shark, resides in coastal waters in the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans. Carey and Judge, ; Rosa, et al. These are bands of lighter cirratumm darker pigmentation along the dorsal surface.

Nurse sharks are found along South America starting from Guyana 8. The sub-terminal mouth is well in front of the eyes, the spiracles are minute, and moderately long barbels reach the mouth Compagno et al.

Nurse shark – Wikipedia

Euprotomicroides Taillight shark E. It is not outwardly apparent that there are distinguishing features to identify paternity among the litter. Danger to Humans Nurse sharks are not generally aggressive and usually swim ginylymostoma when approached.

Breeding season Gingglymostoma occurs in June and July and lasts 2 to 4 weeks. Like other sharks, the purpose of the male’s siphon sac is to assist in sperm competition and to flush rival sperm out. A Dictionary of Zoology. They are directly targeted in some fisheries and considered as bycatch in others. The fifth gill almost overlaps the fourth. Nurse sharks have high territorial fidelity and do not travel more than several square kilometers from their point of origin.

Based on morphological similarities, Ginglymostoma is believed to be the sister genus of Nebriuswith both being placed in a clade that also include species Pseudoginglymostoma brevicaudatumRhincodon typusand Stegostoma fasciatum. Range number of offspring 20 to 30 Range gestation period gingly,ostoma to 6 months Average gestation period 6 months Range age at sexual or reproductive maturity female 15 to 20 years Range age at sexual or reproductive maturity male 10 to 15 years Nurse shark parental investment is limited past the juvenile nursery in the local habitat.

In the Eastern Pacific, populations have declined precipitously. However, some unprovoked attacks on swimmers and divers have been reported. Juveniles are mostly found on the bottom of shallow hinglymostoma reefs, seagrass flats, ciratum around mangrove islands, whereas older individuals typically reside in and around deeper reefs and rocky areas, where they tend to seek shelter in crevices and under ledges during the day and leave their shelter at night to feed on the seabed in shallower areas.


Occasionally nurse sharks are unintentionally trapped in fish netswhich leads to increased worker time spent releasing them. Due to the strong site fidelity of the nurse shark, there have been cases of geographic population fragmentation and local extinctions.

At present, there is not a commercial fishery for this species. Rhincodon Whale shark R. Largespine velvet dogfish P.

However, some larger sharks are known to occasionally feed on them. Parasites Nematodes have been observed in the gills of nurse sharks in captivity at the New York Aquarium, U.

Environmental Biology of Fishes. In Panama, thay are fished for fins and meat. Maximum adult length is currently documented as 3.

Ginglymostoma cirratum – Discover Fishes

Juveniles are more often found in crevices in shallow lagoons. Nurse gibglymostoma are ovovivoparous or aplacental viviparous Compagno, Predators There are no species that regularly prey on nurse sharks. Reproductive biology of elasmobranchs. In the waters of the Florida Keys and the Dry Tortugas archipelagos, the reproductive behavior of the nurse shark has been regularly observed and studied.

ADW doesn’t cover all species in the world, nor does it include all the latest ginglymostoam information about organisms we describe. Stegostoma Zebra shark S.