What's the deal with this horrifying shark found on the Devon coast?

For the first time in recorded history, a scary-looking tropical crocodile shark has washed up on the British coast.

The shark has razor-sharp teeth and was found dead on a beach in Plymouth by a rather shocked family.

They sent a picture of it to the National Marine Aquarium in Plymouth, where experts confirmed it was a crocodile shark which until now has never been seen in the UK.

Walker Steven Greenfields, who spotted it out at Hope Cove in Devon, said: “My whole family was stunned as the animal had really unusual features but was unmistakably a shark”.

The species is related to the deadly Great White, and is normally found in the deep waters around Brazil and Australia.

Its small spiky teeth help it eat small bony fish and shrimp, and its size means it would have posed little threat to any swimmers, although could potentially have given someone a nasty bite. But Jaws it definitely isn’t.

Because it is so small, it can get caught up in commercial fishing nets, which is why it’s now listed as “near threatened” on the International Union for Conservation of Nature Red List of Threatened Species.

The crocodile shark is in the same family as the Great White (Ross Spearing)

But you shouldn’t let one shark stop you from paddling on British beaches this summer as this find is incredibly rare.

James Wright, curator at the aquarium, said: “It is likely to be an isolated incident, but there have been similar stranding incidents in South Africa. This time of year though, UK waters are at their coldest so this occurrence is very unusual.”

In fact, the cold water may well have caused a shock to the system that killed the shark.

Scary GIF – Find & Share on GIPHY

You aren’t going to need a bigger boat for this one, people.


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