Temporal range: Early Eocene to Present
|Tiger shark (Galeocerdo cuvier)|
Müller & Henle, 1837
Péron & Lesueur, 1822
The tiger shark (Galeocerdo cuvier), the second largest predatory shark, is the only member of the genus Galeocerdo. Sharks are fish. Tiger sharks grow up to 20 feet (6 m). On average they are about 10 feet (3 m) long.They usually weigh 385-635 kg. The biggest ever recorded was 7.3m long and weighed 1,524 kg
The tiger shark has tiger-like markings on a dark back with an off-white underbelly. Pups have spotted markings that grow together to form stripes that fade with maturity. It has a large, thick-body with a blunt snout. The first dorsal fin is much longer than the second. The caudal fin is long and pointed. There is a dermal ridge along the back between the 2 dorsal fins. Color-Adult: gray-brown on top, off-white belly, young shark: dark stripes on the back.
Tiger sharks have a special gill slit (a spiracle) behind the eyes that provides oxygen flow directly to the eyes and brain. It also has a very good sense of smell, electroreceptors sensitive to electric currents in the water, and keen eyesight.
Tiger sharks go from the surface to 1,200 feet (360 m). They swim in tropical waters worldwide and in some temperate seas. They inhabit both the shoreline and open waters, ranging perhaps up to 500 miles.