Nurse Shark: Ginglymostoma cirratum
Nurse sharks, Ginglymostoma cirratum, are sluggish bottom dwellers, congregating in large schools on the sea floor. Unlike most sharks, which take in water to breathe by swimming, the nurse shark often remains motionless, pumping water over its gills by opening and closing its mouth, and sometimes using it to suck in prey. Nurse sharks are distinguished by fleshy
appendages resembling fangs that hang below their nose and provide a sense of touch that helps nurse sharks to locate food on the bottom of the ocean floor. Nurse sharks are not usually dangerous, but the will clamp a viselike hold on unwary molesters - such as people who grab a
nurse's tail hoping for an underwater ride. They are not related to the Grey Nurse Shark of Australia, and are the only species of carpet shark found in North America, on both coasts. The Nurse Shark is one of the few sharks that do well in captivity.
Print Number - SH023
Limited Edition signed color photography for sale by Stephen Brunson
Nurse Shark, Ginglymostoma cirratum Statistics:
Weight: Up to 600 Lbs.
Length: 10 - 14 Ft.
Mating: Late Spring or Early Winter.
Lifespan: Nurse sharks have been known to live up to 25 years.
Number of young: 20 - 30 pups at a time
Gestation Period: Unknown
Typical Diet: Shellfish, squids, shrimps, crabs, spiny lobsters, sea urchins, and small fishes.
Distribution: Shallow waters of the Atlantic, from Rhode Island to Brazil; including the Caribbean, Bahamas, and
all the way to west coast of Africa.
Danger to Humans:
If provoked, can inflict a painful bite.