Silvertip shark

Species Profile

Name: the silvertip shark (Carcharhinus albimarginatus) is a large species of requiem shark in the family Carcharhinidae.

Appearance: silvertips are a streamlined species with a long, broad snout and large, round eyes. They are typically a blue grey colour above and white below. They can be recognised by their distinctive white or silver edged fins.

Size: they can grow up to 3.0 metres long but typically measure between 2.0 to 2.5 metres in length.

Diet: silvertips are large and powerful apex predators. They feed on a wide range of fish, rays, smaller sharks, and cephalopods. When competing for food they can be aggressive towards other sharks of a similar size. Older individuals are often heavily scarred from conflicts with other silvertips.

Did you know: they are inquisitive and bold sharks, especially in the presence of food, and are regarded as potentially dangerous to humans. Silvertips have been known to rush up from deep water to inspect divers when they first enter the water. If pursued by divers, they sometimes perform a threat display, warning that they are prepared to attack. The display begins with the shark accelerating away before turning and charging towards the perceived threat. When close the shark suddenly stops, turns on its side, opens its jaws, and ‘shivers’. If the diver persists, the shark may rapidly close in and slash with its upper teeth.

Location: silvertips are widely distributed throughout the Indian and Pacific Oceans. They are typically found around isolated islands, coral banks, and reef drop-offs.

Best places to see silvertip sharks

According to reports submitted to WildSide, the best places to see silvertip sharks are as follows:

Place Chance to see User rating No. reports
Great Barrier Reef
very high
very good

Photo credit: Albert kok, under a Creative Commons license from Wikipedia

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