Oceanpedia   Critter finder   Sharks and Rays

Oceanpedia Critter finder Sharks and Rays


What are sharks and rays? Unlike the bony
fish sharks and rays have skeletons made of cartilage. They also do not have a
swim bladder meaning that they are negatively buoyant. To stay in the water
column sharks and rays must constantly swim. Today there are over 490 species of
Ray and more than 375 species of shark. The Sharks can be divided into two broad
groups: the bottom dwellers which are often found resting on the sea floor, and
mid water sharks most of whom swim continuously. Ray’s are essentially
bottom-dwelling sharks that have expanded pectoral fins and gill openings on
the underside of their body.

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