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Discovery Magazine 8/1/2016

A Goblin of a Shark

by  Steven Akin (Dianne Bray) 2016 CC-by-sa-3.0


When you think of sharks, what usually comes to your mind? I think of a Great white catching fish (and sometimes people) while scary music plays in the background. But did you know that there are more species of sharks than there are of dogs? Over 400 types of these under-water bad-boys are in our oceans, ranging in length from eight inches to over 40 feet!

One of the coolest species is the Goblin shark. Ranging from 10 to 13 feet long, with 26 long, narrow teeth, these guys may look scary, but they’re actually super cool. Some biologists have labeled them “vampire sharks” because they tend to stay over half a mile below the ocean’s surface. Found everywhere from the Gulf of Mexico to the tip of South Africa, the majority of them have been witnessed in underwater canyons off the coast of Japan.

Because they tend to stick to the ocean floor, this location largely dictates their diet. Stingrays, mollusks, squid, and crabs are all on the menu when the Goblin shark gets hungry.

What makes the Goblin shark so amazing? First of all, because it lives in deep water where little light is available, it relies on a special sensory system in its snout, called the ampullae [AM-pew-lay] of Lorenzini. This “electrodetection” allows it to sense its prey without actually being able to see it.

The second and probably coolest thing about the Goblin shark is its jaw. While looking for lunch, he will keep his jaw locked tight with two pairs of elastic ligaments (think of two rubber bands stretched very tight). The sensor in his nose alerts him that food is nearby and he starts to sneak up on it. (Goblin sharks are ambush predators.) When he gets within range, he releases his jaw, catapults it forward, and traps the prey in his massive mouth!

Evolutionists think that Goblin sharks evolved over 125 million years ago, but the truth is God made sharks just a few thousand years ago on the fifth day of Creation. This creature’s jaw and sensory system were clearly fine-tuned by the Master Designer.


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