white death, man-eater
Occurs worldwide, most commonly in cool temperate seas.
The white shark is best known in parts of the central and western Pacific,
especially off Australia and New Zealand. It is also known to enter the
Mediterranean Sea. It also frequents
Australian and South African beaches and is suspected of entering saltwater
It resembles the
mako and the porbeagle. The snout is cortical and ends in a point, whence
the name "white pointer." It can be very easily distinguished from all
other sharks by its teeth, which are large and triangular like stone arrowheads,
with sharp, serrated cutting edges.
The great "white" shark is actually a grayish brown color above, fading
to an off-white on the belly. The pectoral fins are black-tipped, and
there is a black oval spot on the body just above them. Its diet includes
fish, squid and other sharks as well as sea turtles, seals, sea lions,
and sea gulls.
Fishing methods include bait fishing with large fish chunks while chumming.
Also trolling. Baits include tuna, snapper, mullet and other fishes, especially
those that are oily. Despite its infamy, the peat white shark is a relatively
uncommon species. It reaches sexual maturity at a length of 11-14 ft (3-4
m). Like the other makerel sharks (mako and porbeagle), it is warm-blooded.
It is probably the most dangerous of all sharks as far as size, strength,
ability and disposition to attack are concerned. The flesh is edible,
though rarely eaten.