Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission: The Diversity of Florida’s Sharks

By  //  October 28, 2015

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sharks found in Florida can grow up to 40 feet

Florida’s shark species are very diverse. While some species only reach a few feet in length, others can reach lengths of up to 40 feet. The maximum size of a nurse shark is around nine feet long and a weight of 275 lbs. These nurse sharks were spotted at one of FWC Fish and Wildlife Research Institute’s study sites in the northern Exumas. (MyFWC image)

Florida’s shark species are very diverse. While some species only reach a few feet in length, others can reach lengths of up to 40 feet. The maximum size of a nurse shark is around nine feet long and a weight of 275 lbs. These nurse sharks were spotted at one of FWC Fish and Wildlife Research Institute’s study sites in the northern Exumas. (MyFWC image)

MyFWC.com – Florida’s shark species are very diverse.

While some species only reach a few feet in length, others can reach lengths of up to 40 feet.

The maximum size of a nurse shark is around nine feet long and a weight of 275 pounds.

One type of common shark found in Florida’s waters is the Blacktip Shark. It’s Common in Florida’s coastal waters, bays and estuaries.

A very active, fast-swimming shark, the Blacktip is often seen at the surface. Maximum length for the Blacktip shark about 6 feet.

Another type of common shark is the Bull Shark. They are an apex predator that inhabits estuarine, nearshore and offshore waters of both the Gulf and Atlantic coasts of Florida.

The Bull Shark commonly enters estuarine waters and is one of the few shark species that may inhabit freshwater, sometimes venturing hundreds of miles inland via coastal river systems.

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The maximum size about 11 feet and are estimated to live for 24 years or more.

Third is the Great Hammerhead Shark. A common tropical and subtropical shark that inhabits the open ocean and the shallow coastal waters of both the Gulf and Atlantic coasts of Florida.

Favors continental and insular coral reefs but is often associated with inlets and the mouths of bays. Nomadic and migratory, with some Florida populations moving north along the Atlantic coast in summer. The maximum size is about 18 feet.

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Lemon Sharks are an abundant, inshore tropical shark that inhabits both estuarine and nearshore waters of the Gulf and Atlantic coasts of Florida.

Commonly enters estuarine waters and often ventures into freshwater areas, but does not penetrate as far up rivers as the Bull shark. Migrates southward and into deeper waters in the winter months.

Lastly, is the Tiger Shark. Common throughout Florida, the Tiger Shark occurs worldwide in tropical and warm-temperate waters.

It is found in a variety of habitats including river mouths, shallow bays, and open ocean.

CLICK HERE FOR MORE INFORMATION ABOUT FLORIDA SHARKS 


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