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Sharks in the Russian seas

Coasts of Russia are washed by waters of the seas of Pacific, Atlantic and Arctic oceans. And a set of many living creatures, including sharks lives in each one of them. What is a probability of meeting of swimmers and diving fans with representatives of this sea predator species?

Pacific Ocean water area

The Pacific seas the Sea of Japan, Sea of Okhotsk and Bering sea wash Far Eastern coast of Russia. In cold waters of these seas such big predatory sharks, as gray-blue or mako and big white shark are seldom. These types prefer warmer habitats, but after all the risk of meeting with them in a swimming season is present.

One more big predator, one can meet with at the coast of Primorskyi region is a giant hammer head shark. This is the largest representative of hammer head sharks family, which was met even in Strait of Tartary. Statistically, cases of hammer head sharks attack on people are single, but nevertheless it is necessary to be afraid of a meeting with this six-meter predator in the summer.

In the spring and in the summer ichthyologists notice emergence of giant sharks near the Far Eastern coast. Despite frightening sizes (length of an adult individual reaches 15 m) and the considerable mass of a body (more than four tons), this sharks species doesn't show aggression towards the man. The giant shark eats plankton and constitute no danger to sea swimming fans.

A spinner shark, also called a shark-spindle, and a blue shark are more wide-spread in the Sea of Japan, than the other species. These predators from numerous gray sharks family pose real threat for the people in water. Some tragic cases of blue shark attacks on divers and swimmers were recorded.

The Pacific salmon shark, a close relative of a mackerel shark living in the Atlantic Ocean, can be found in the Sea of Japan and the Sea of Okhotsk waters. This large predator is a relative of menacing mako shark and white shark, relating to family of Lamnidae (mackerel) sharks.

Unlike warm-requiring relatives the salmon shark differs by bright spotty belly colouring and a wide short snout. Habitat area open waters of the Pacific Ocean from North East Honshu to Vladivostok.

The salmon shark is dangerous for the man, can show aggression towards swimmers and divers. Generally it attacks gregarious fishes, can eat cephalopods of mollusks and other sea inhabitants, including food fishes. Salmon sharks move in large runs numbering two-three tens individuals. Meat of salmon sharks are used in food. The active catch is the reason of decrease in a population of salmon sharks.

One more well-known representative in the Pacific seas is a spurdog, or a picked shark. Other names: spiny dogfish, mud shark. Spurdog is a medium-sized representative of sharks species. Trunk length doesn't exceed two meters. The weight is about 20 kg. The atavism in the form of thorns in back fins gave one more name to these predators picked sharks. Spurdog is included in the International Red Data List. Spurdog doesn't constitute danger for the person.

Who is worth to be afraid of - a Japanese carpet shark. It swims very seldom to the waters of Primorskyi region, but the meeting with it can end with the spoiled rest. Sharp teeth is capable to put serious traumas, however, not life-threatening.

Sharp-toothed and Asian sharks, rare guests in Primorskyi region, can be met during a warm season. These medium-sized predators aren't dangerous for the person, but can bite.

Very interesting representative of cartilaginous fishes which can be met in the Sea of Japan is Japanese sea angel, reminding a scate by the form. The sizes of an average adult individual usually doesnt exceed one and a half meters though specimen about two meters long come across occasionally. This ground predator is also called a sea devil. It hunts, having buried in sand and silt, and attacks the victim when it, without noticing danger, swims up too close to the predator.

Common thresher migrates sometimes from the subtropical seas to the midlatitudes of the Sea of Japan and the Sea of Okhotsk. It approaches to the coast seldom, generally dwells in the open ocean. Surprising feature of a common thresher is the tail fin, which top blade makes about a half of predator body length. Common thresher hunts with the help of a tail, deafening the victim by well-aimed strong strike. Thornback ray (another one name of a common thresher) eats sea fish and cephalopods, but observers noticed common thresher catching birds sitting down on a surface, deafening them by blow of the long tail.

Thresher is a large shark. Length with a tail reaches six meters, weight can be up to 450 kg. Cases of thresher attack on the man dont exist in statistical data, but meeting with a large sea predator is always risky.

It is far not the total list of the sharks noticed by ichthyologists in the water area of the Pacific Ocean. There were cases of atypical for this area sharks unexpected emergence in the  waters of the Pacific seas.

Predatory inhabitants of the Atlantic Ocean

There are much more shark species in the Pacific seas, than in Atlantic, but its also possible to meet a couple representatives of these predatory species in the Black sea, the Baltic sea and the Sea of Azov. There is first of all a spurdog, which was already mentioned in the first part of the story. One more representative is a small-spotted cat shark, which migrates usually to the Black sea from the Mediterranean Sea for the summer season. The length of this predator doesn't exceed 60 cm though scientists proved existence of meter-long individuals. The cat shark isn't aggressive, swimmers and divers shouldn't be afraid of it.

Other shark species arent presented in the Atlantic Ocean. The facts of emergence in warm waters of the Black and the Mediterranean seas a goblin shark and a mackerel shark, appeared in mass media, were not confirmed scientifically.

Sharks of the Arctic Ocean

Spurdog and polar or Greenland shark can be met in the Seas of the Arctic Ocean more often than the other species. Habitat area of a Greenland shark is Barents sea and the White sea.

The Greenland (polar) shark is a large predator with length over six meters and a weight about one ton. Its informal name - a "sleepy" shark the predator received due to its manner to move in water slowly and melancholically. Polar shark is a scavenger fish. It eats remains of animal victims and casually caught small sea inhabitants, sometimes jellyfishes and algas.

Elephant sharks (fish-elephants, the Australian ghosts) live in moderately warm waters of the Atlantic, but may reach Murmansk coast during warm years. Young sharks have the snout which is similar to a short trunk, because of it the shark received its name. The elephant shark eats a plankton and isnt dangerous for the person. It is included in the International Red Data List, as a threatened species.

The blackmouth cat shark can be met in the White sea and the Sea of Barents. Another one name of it is a sawtail cat shark. Dwelling area: coastal zone of the Adriatic and the Mediterranean seas, washing coast of the European countries, the North Sea and coastal waters of Norway. There are recorded facts of a blackmouth cat shark emergence at the coast of the Kola Peninsula. This medium-sized predator uses small fishes, ground mollusks and crustaceans as a food.

Typical species of the Barents Sea is the mackerel shark, sometimes reaching the length of three and a half meters. Usual length of the shark is 2-2,5 meters. The mackerel shark eats run fishes sardine, mackerel, herring, sometimes also cephalopods mollusks. Till now it was considered as a food fish and it was actively caught because of tasty meat and delicious fins. Currently due to sharp population decrease it is included to the International Red Data List.

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