What is a wobbegong shark

what is a wobbegong shark

Wobbegong Shark Fish Species, Types, Diet, Facts, Size

Wobbegong Shark. Elias Levy. (link is external) They might look like lumpy carpets, and be named after an unfamiliar Australian Aboriginal word (apparently meaning "shaggy beard". (link is external)), but make no mistake Ц wobbegongs are definitely sharks. Known as Уcarpet sharksФ because of the ornate patterns on their bodies, wobbegong species include the spotted wobbegong and the floral banded . What is Wobbegong Shark: The wobbegong sharks are bottom-dwelling sharks and spend their most of time resting on the sea floor. Most of the species have a maximum length of about m. These can attack humans but no serious injuries. Wobbegong Shark Characteristics: Scientific Name: Orectolobidae: Other Names: Carpet sharks: Average Size: m: Average Weight.

The wobbegong, also known as the wobbie or carpet sharkresides in shallow waters of the Pacific and Indian oceans. The adult shark can range in length up to Wobbegongs also possess distinct whisker appendages, and q name is believed to derive from the Australian Aboriginal term for "shaggy beard.

More than six species of this type of shark exist, including Japanese wobbegongs, tasseled wobbegongs, cobbler wobbegongs, spotted wobbegongs, ornate wobbegongs, northern wobbegongs, and western wobbegongs. These sharks are typically found in water varying from 3 feet to feet about 1 to meters deep.

The shark lives on ledges and in coral gardens, as well as in shipwrecks. It is not unusual for the wobbegong to what sea animal has 3 hearts in caves with crayfish.

Nocturnal creatures, wobbegongs often use their whiskers to help nab fish. Also, the shark can blend in to its surroundings such as rocks and the ocean floor preying upon fish that come s close. Usually, the shark will lay on the bottom of the water for hours and then lift up its mouth, which resembles seaweed when other creatures come close to investigate.

Ambush predators, the shark uses its long sharp teeth for gripping its wobbegonng, and will often hold onto its victims until they perish and can be swallowed whole.

The diet of the wobbegong includes smaller fish, crab, octopussquid, rays, and even other sharks. Wobbegongs mate during the winter and are ovoviviparous, meaning that they give birth to live young without a placental attachment. A female shark may give birth to litters that contain up to wobbeglng many as 40 pups. Pups often emerge two at a time over a hour span. At birth, the young are approximately 8 inches in length about 20 centimeters and can fend for themselves. The shark is often fished, as the creatures lack bones.

The wobbegong is often served at fish and chip restaurants in Australia. The wobbegong is also fished for its skin because of its unique color and patterns. Steve R. Last Modified Date: February 09, Please enter the following code:. Login: Forgot password?

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Wobbegong sharks are bottom-dwelling shark species that prefer to lie on the bottom of the sea resting. They are rarely active and just lying fixed to a spot most of the time. Wobbegong sharks are very popular among the carpet sharks which belongs to the family Orectolobidae. Within this family are 12 extant species of wobbegongs under 3 genera. Wobbegong sharks, unique predators that chill in shallows and reefs and let prey come to them, are a conservation success story. MENU Skip to content Tree of Life. The spotted wobbegong is a slow and sluggish shark species that prefers to spend most of its day time resting on sandy bottoms, inside caves, coastal bays, and coral reefs. They are nocturnal species that becomes more active at night, swimming slowly in search of prey.

So, you think you know sharks, do you? Think again. Let me introduce you to the spotted wobbegong shark Orectolobus maculatus and the rest of its wobbegong comrades. Wobbegongs lie still on the bottom of reefs and shallow waters, just like certain types of flat fish such as halibut and flounder. They have plenty of camouflage to help them out, too. They have a splotched, patterned back that blends in with the reef.

They also have numerous shaggy, beard-like projections around their mouth, like the famous ghillie suits of military snipers. Finally, they have tiny vertical fins dorsal and caudal fins that help them keep a low profile.

The wobbegong also has a H-U-G-E head. There are many species of wobbegong shark in addition to the spotted wobbegong. They generally look alike as well, and it can be difficult to tell them apart. In many cases, the location or the size of the shark is the determining factor in species identification. This brings up an interesting question: if you have a small wobbegong, is it actually a smaller species, or just a juvenile version of a larger wobbegong?

This question has baffled experts, but thanks to DNA sequencing and other new technologies, we now know that there are 11 other wobbegong species in addition to the spotted wobbegong:. Wobbegongs wah-buh-gongs live in the Pacific and Indian oceans and have a very narrow range at that.

The spotted wobbegong in particular is more common around Australian waters. Indonesian wobbegongs live in Indonesian waters, and Japanese wobbbegongs live inЕyou guessed it, Japanese waters.

Unlike a lot of other sharks that prefer cruising the open ocean, the wobbegong is more of a homebody. You might even call it a couch-potato shark. They usually pick a spot and plant themselves down, sometimes not moving for many hours at a time. Wobbegongs also prefer shallow water, and they love reefs with all their nooks and crannies to hide in and hunt.

Speaking of huntingЕ. Remember those big mouths that I told you to remember? This behavior sometimes gets them into trouble with people. Maybe a tasty-looking fish fin swimming past happens to be attached to a human leg: an unfortunate mistake for both the shark and the human. It can be difficult to get wobbegong sharks off of you if they do clamp down, but it can be done. In fact, of 32 recorded wobbegong attacks , none were fatal.

Most of the time wobbegongs are content with simply sitting in place and letting prey come to them, although sometimes they will also actively hunt and move around. Their shaggy bearded projections will act like lures to draw in prey closer. Once within reach, the wobbegongs suddenly take action. Sometimes it seems like most stories of shark conservation are like witnessing the dying throes of a species. Wobbegongs have a good capacity to keep their population numbers up. They breed once every three years or so, and the viviparious live-bearing females can give birth to a staggering pups per litter!

Just imagine if humans could do thatЕ. Wobbegongs used to be fished with very little regulation in Australia. However, after a report showed that the wobbegong population was decreasing , the government clamped down. They tightened up regulations for the commercial and recreational fishing industries in Since then it appears that the wobbegong population has been increasing. As long as we keep an eye on these shark populations and react if they appear to be going downhill, this is one shark story that will have a happy ending.

She also spent her time in Alaska racing sled dogs, and studying caribou and how well they are able to digest nutrients from their foods. Now, she enjoys sampling fine craft beers in Fort Collins, Colorado, knitting, and helping to inspire people to learn more about wildlife, nature, and science in general.

Biodiversity Spotted Wobbegong Shark. What do wobbegong sharks look like? This question has baffled experts, but thanks to DNA sequencing and other new technologies, we now know that there are 11 other wobbegong species in addition to the spotted wobbegong: Eucrossorhinus dasypogon Ч tasselled wobbegong Orectolobus floridus Ч floral banded wobbegong Orectolobus halei Ч gulf or banded wobbegong Orectolobus hutchinsi Ч western wobbegong Orectolobus japonicus Ч Japanese wobbegong Orectolobus leptolineatus Ч Indonesian wobbegong Orectolobus ornatus Ч ornate wobbegong Orectolobus parvimaculatus Ч dwarf spotted wobbegong Orectolobus reticulatus Ч network wobbegong Orectolobus wardi Ч northern wobbegong Sutorectus tentaculatus Ч cobbler wobbegong Where do wobbegong sharks live?

Speaking of huntingЕ What do wobbegong sharks eat? Choose one of the following categories to see related pages: Large Carnivores , Sharks. Share this Page. You can follow Lindsay VanSomeren Twitter. Common Name: Spotted Wobbegong Shark. Classification Kingdom:. Species Range. Science Newsletter:. Full List of our Videos. Teaching Biology? How to Make Science Films. Read our Wildlife Guide. On the Trail of the Egret. Tips for Shooting Smoke Grenade Photos. Pacific Sleeper Shark: Giant of the Deep.

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