This movie requires Flash Player 8. Download Flash Player 8

Issue Features
View this issue online as it looks in print
Discovery Magazine 6/1/2008

Ghost Sharks on the Loose!

The Latin word chimaera means monster, so the name “chimaera” perfectly fits these strange-looking, scaleless ghost sharks. There are about 25 species of chimaera. Like sharks, all chimaera have a thick body and a cartilaginous (CAR-tuh-LÄ-juh-nus) skeleton. A cartilaginous skeleton is made of cartilage (firm, flexible tissue) instead of bone.

The chimaera is similar to a shark or ray in many ways, but is different from sharks because it lacks the sharp, replaceable teeth of sharks. Instead, the chimaera has rat-like teeth. Also, the chimaera’s skin is different. It has only a single pair of gill slits, and its upper jaw is attached to its skull. Even though the chimaera is not a shark, we should still avoid it. Most chimaera have a venomous spine directly in front of their dorsal fin. This sharp spine can inflict painful wounds on humans or animal predators, which include larger fish and sharks. The largest chimaera reach a length of about six and a half feet.

Chimaera are called “deep-water fish” because they usually roam near ocean floors. Australian ghost sharks, for example, live in the southwestern Pacific Ocean, along the coasts of Australia and New Zealand. They migrate to inshore bays in the Spring for mating. The Australian ghost shark is easy to recognize because of the club-like projection on its snout. This lobed, trunk-like snout, which includes pores that sense movement and weak electrical fields, makes hunting for food much easier. Ghost sharks such as these can even detect buried shellfish.

The various types of chimaera are unusual, but remember that God has provided them with the perfect body structures for life in the ocean. It is impossible that the chimaera evolved.

Copyright © 2008 Apologetics Press, Inc. All rights reserved.

*Please keep in mind that Discovery articles are written for 3rd-6th graders.

This document may be copied, on the condition that it will not be republished in print unless otherwise stated below, and will not be used for any commercial purpose, as long as the following stipulations are observed: (1) Apologetics Press must be designated as the original publisher; (2) the specific Apologetics Press Web site URL must be noted; (3) any references, footnotes, or endnotes that accompany the article must be included with any written reproduction of the article; (4) textual alterations of any kind are strictly forbidden; (5) Some illustrations (e.g., photographs, charts, graphics, etc.) are not the intellectual property of Apologetics Press and as such cannot be reproduced from our site without consent from the person or organization that maintains those intellectual rights; (6) serialization of written material (e.g., running an article in several parts) is permitted, as long as the whole of the material is made available, without editing, in a reasonable length of time; (7) articles, excepting brief quotations, may not be offered for sale or included in items offered for sale; and (8) articles may be reproduced in electronic form for posting on Web sites pending they are not edited or altered from their original written content and that credit is given to Apologetics Press, including the web location from which the articles were taken. Further, documents may not be copied without source statements (title, author, journal title), and the address of the publisher and owner of rights, as listed below.

For catalog, samples, or further information, contact:

Apologetics Press
230 Landmark Drive
Montgomery, Alabama 36117
Phone (334) 272-8558

Web Store

Defending the Faith Study Bible

We are very excited to announce the NEW AP Defending the Faith Study Bible now available.

Featured Audio


Click the following link to visit our Multimedia section.

Featured Audio