UMASS Dartmouth Intern
At the end of 2019, there were a number of Thresher Sharks washing ashore on Cape Cod beaches. Thresher Sharks are very unique sharks in the order Lamniformes, which are commonly called Mackerel Sharks. Threshers are easily identified by their extremely long caudal or tail-fin, which they use to stun their prey, making their prey easy to consume. Threshers can be found in the Atlantic, Pacific, and Indian Oceans. These species are highly migratory and can cover vast distances in a relatively short period of time. There are three species of Thresher Sharks: The Bigeye Thresher, Common Thresher and Pelagic Thresher. The Common Thresher is the largest species, reaching a length of 20ft and is the species that is found in New England waters.
|Dead Common Thresher Shark found in Wellfleet, MA|
References for Further Reading
- Florida Museum of Natural History-https://www.floridamuseum.ufl.edu/discover-fish/species-profiles/alopias-vulpinus/
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- Shark Sider - https://www.sharksider.com/10-easy-ways-help-save-sharks/
- Monterey Bay Seafood Watch - https://www.seafoodwatch.org