Great White Sharks
by Tien V.
average 12-16 feet long. The biggest Great White Shark on record was 23
feet long, weighing about 7,000 pounds. Females are larger than males,
as with most sharks. Shark pup can be over 5 feet long at birth.
& Feeding Behavior:
White sharks are predatory animals that begin life by feeding on fish, rays, and other sharks as they grow, switch to feeding on marine mammals and scavenging on large animal carcasses. Their first mammalian preys are usually the small harbor seal, but as the sharks increase in size, they become large enough to eat sea lions, elephant seals, and small toothed whales. Attack strategy consists of a swift, surprise attack from below, inflicting a large, potentially fatal bite. They will occasionally feed on sea turtles and sea otters, and are known to attack, but not eat, humans.
& Feeding Habits:
White Sharks eat fish, rays, and other sharks. Adults eat larger prey
including sea lions, seals, small toothed whales, otters, and sea
turtles. They also eat dead animals that they have found floating dead
in the water. Great Whites do not chew their food. Their teeth rip prey
into mouth-sized pieces which are swallowed whole. A big meal can
satisfy a Great White for up to two months.
The waters off central California offer a lot of food for the Great White, and every summer and fall they actively feed in near shore areas. The Farallon Islands is a common feeding ground for these sharks. In the summer the sharks feed on seals and sea lions along the coast as far north as Oregon and occasionally the Gulf of Alaska, and in the fall, they turn south and feed along the offshore islands. It is believed that female white sharks migrate to southern California to give birth to their offspring.
Sharks give birth to 2-14 fully-formed pups that are up to 5 feet long.
Like all sharks, fertilization of the eggs occurs in the female. The
eggs hatch in the female and are nourished by eating unfertilized eggs
and smaller siblings in the womb. They swim away from the mother
immediately after birth.
are decreasing in numbers and are rare due to years of being hunted by
men. They are a protected species along the coasts of California, USA,
Australia, and South America.