10 characteristics of sharks

Sharks are fascinating and feared marine predators around the world. These magnificent animals have existed in the oceans of our planet for millions of years, and over time they have developed unique abilities and characteristics that make them leaders in their ecosystem.

This article will explore the main characteristics of sharks, from their way of life to their role in the ocean food chain. Some notable species will also be highlighted and interesting information about these amazing creatures will be provided.

Top 10 characteristics of sharks

  1. Excellent aquatic predators: Sharks are known to be efficient and ferocious predators in the ocean.
  2. Cartilaginous skeleton: Unlike bony fish, sharks have a cartilaginous skeleton, which gives them greater flexibility and agility.
  3. Rough, jagged skin: Sharks' skin is covered in dermal scales called dermotonos, which give them their characteristic rough texture.
  4. Sharp, regenerative teeth: Sharks have multiple rows of sharp teeth, which are continually replaced as they lose them.
  5. Excellent swimmers: Sharks can swim at surprising speeds thanks to their aerodynamic shape and powerful fins.

  6. Developed sensory organs: Sharks have acute vision, extremely sensitive smell and hearing, and electrosensory organs to detect prey and orient themselves in the dark.
  7. Variety of species: There are around 500 different species of sharks, ranging from small reef sharks to great white sharks.
  8. Important role in the food chain: Sharks are top predators that help regulate fish populations in the ocean, maintaining the balance of the marine ecosystem.
  9. Diverse Habitats: Sharks are found in a wide variety of habitats, from coastal waters to deep waters.
  10. Threats and Conservation: Many shark species are threatened due to overfishing and habitat destruction. Conservation of these animals is important to maintain the health of the oceans.

Notable shark species

Among the numerous species of sharks, some of them deserve special mention due to their size, behavior or unique characteristics:

SpeciesAverage sizeHabitatFeatured Features
White shark (Carcharodon carcharias)4.5 - 6 metersCoastal and oceanic watersOne of the largest marine predators, serrated teeth and excellent vision.
Whale shark (Rhincodon typus)about 12 metersWarm and tropical oceansThe largest fish in the world, it feeds mainly on plankton and small fish.
Hammerhead shark (Sphyrna spp.)2 - 6 metersTropical and subtropical watersHammer-shaped jaw that provides greater vision and detection of prey.

These are just a few of the many fascinating species that make up the world of sharks. Each of them has unique adaptations that allow them to thrive in their respective aquatic environment.


Sharks are amazing creatures and vital to the health of the oceans. Their role as top predators and their ability to adapt to different habitats make them a fascinating group of marine animals. However, many sharks are endangered due to overfishing and habitat destruction, so it is essential to implement conservation measures for their protection.

In short, by learning and understanding the characteristics and importance of sharks, we can appreciate their beauty and contribute to their conservation for future generations.

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ENCICLOPEDIA DE CARACTERÍSTICAS (2023) 10 characteristics of sharks, en 10caracteristicas.com. https://10caracteristicas.com/en/10-characteristics-of-sharks/ (Consultado el: 28-11-2023)

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