Lemon shark

Facts about lemon shark

We found 19 facts about lemon sharks

Negaprion brevirostris

The lemon shark is one of over 1,000 species of shark. It has a very gentle nature and thus is one of the most popular among shark divers. Lemon sharks are very social with each other and follow strict social rules and hierarchy.

Lemon shark
The lemon shark is a species of the Carcharhinidae family.
The family includes many species, such as bull shark, tiger shark, grey reef shark, and blue shark.
They are commonly found in coastal subtropical waters.
They occupy mostly the eastern shores of both the Americas, the Caribbean and the Gulf of Mexico, and the western coast of north and central Africa.
It was first described by a Cuban zoologist, Felipe Poey, in 1868.
It reaches an average length of 3 meters.
The largest shark ever caught was 3,7 meters long and weighed 184 kg.
Lemon sharks are sexually dimorphic.
Females are slightly larger than males, but their weight does not differ.
It is a skilled nocturnal predator, often preying on crustaceans, stingrays, and bony fish.
The amount of food ingested varies, as the lemon shark eats as long as it feels hungry.
They show a tendency towards cannibalism.
It happens that an adult lemon shark will eat its own pups.
Its eyesight is poor, thus it relies on electroreceptors called ampullae of Lorenzini.
However, their eyes possess both rods and cones, thus they are capable of seeing shapes and colors.
On average, lemon sharks live up to 30 years.
The yellow or olive hue on their skin works as an excellent camouflage on the sandy seafloor.
Their underbellies are light yellow, and that is where their name comes from.
Lemon sharks are very social.
They live in organized groups with a strict hierarchy and complex social rules.
Lemon sharks are viviparous.
A Female gives birth to a living pup after 12 months of gestation.
Lemon sharks’ mating season is spring and summer.
Females return to the same nursery ground and birth offspring.
One female breed once a year.
The gestation lasts for 12 months, and after the female gives birth, she takes a year-long break between the litters.
Pups stay in the litter for a few years.
The litter can consist of up to 17 individuals.
Lemon sharks practice polyandry.
It means that females mate with multiple males throughout their lives.
Lemon sharks do not have known natural predators.
Their pups tend to fall prey, however, to other sharks.
Lemon sharks are not aggressive towards humans.
There are about 10 confirmed lemon shark bites.
It is listed as vulnerable by the IUCN.
It is a target of both commercial and recreational fishing. Its fins and skin hold high commercial value.
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