Frilled Sharks (Chlamydoselachus anguineus) are strange, prehistoric-looking sharks thought by some cryptozoologists to be responsible for certain ‘sea serpent’ sightings. Here are 8 unbelievable facts about the frilled shark…
1. Their common name comes from their six pairs of collar-like gills with frilly edges.
2. Their teeth are crazy! They have 25 rows of backwards facing, three-pronged teeth.
3. Frilled sharks launch themselves at prey like a snake and can open their mouths extra wide to take in prey half as long as their body.
4. At depth, the Frilled shark can hover in the water mainly due to its huge liver which is packed with low-density oils and hydrocarbons.
5. Their estimated gestation period is three and a half years. This is nearly twice as long as African elephants carry their young.
6. These sharks were first described by German ichthyologist Ludwig H.P. Döderlein, who taught at Tokyo University from 1879 to 1881. He managed to capture two specimens of this rarely seen creature in Tokyo Bay. He returned to his home in Vienna with the specimens and wrote a paper describing the sharks. This paper, and with it a rare insight into this mysterious creature, was later lost.
7. The Frilled shark wasn’t seen in its natural habitat until 2004. Footage of it was captured by NOAA scientists during a submersible dive exploring the “Latitude 31-30 Transect” in the Atlantic Ocean.
8. A live specimen was caught in Japan in 2007. The captured shark was transferred it to a seawater pool at Awashima Marine Park in Shizuoka. It died just a few hours after capture.
For more Marine Scoop shark goodness why not check out the Marine Scoop’s profile of the Porbeagle shark, a shy relative of the Great White. Click hereto watch the video