The Killer Great White Shark Can’t Stomach Human Flesh

by Jonathan Morel, age 15

The great white shark, which can be found roaming many of the world’s seas and oceans, is the largest predatory shark. Great white sharks are massive creatures weighing, on average, 7,040 pounds, and are 12 to 20 feet in length.

One of the most efficient predators on the planet, great white sharks have the tools to locate prey at great precision. Their small snouts pick up electrical nerve signals from other creatures. When the shark attacks, it hones in at a high speed, holding its jaws wide open. With its lower and upper jaw thrusting outward so that the top and bottom teeth are aligned, the shark’s biting capacity is increased.

The great white sharks’ teeth are very sharp. In fact, islanders in the Pacific once used sharks’ teeth as razor blades because of their notched, saw-like edges. And sharks never need to worry about losing their teeth because new ones move in from behind when the old ones wear out.

Rare in tropical waters, the great whites are found mainly off the coast of North America, Australia, South Africa, Japan, New Zealand, and parts of the Mediterranean Sea. Like most other sharks, the great white must constantly swim to force oxygenated water through its gills. They can swim all day at a low speed without wasting energy. This helps them to hunt large prey such as dolphins, seals and tuna, which are often widely scattered throughout the ocean. These sharks can go days or even months without food.

Although the great white is the largest predatory shark, it is small compared to the whale shark, which typically reaches more than twice the length of the great white. The whale shark, unlike the great white, only eats plankton, presenting little threat to other sea creatures.

Great white sharks have no motive to attack humans; most victims survive, suggesting that the shark dislikes human flesh. It is still important to be careful in shark-infested waters to avoid shark attacks.

[Source: Wildlife Explorers]