Creature Feature: Sailfin Rough

Sailfin rough Fundacao

Downward we descend to explore more mysterious creatures in the deep! The Sailfin Roughshark (Oxynotus paradoxus) is another deep water species about which little information has been discovered. What we do know about this deep water shark is based on what scientists have visually observed. Their bodies are a triangular shape, short and bluntly snouted with large denticles (skin teeth) covering the surface of their skin. The dorsal fins are very noticeable with tall sail-like fins which contains spines. As for the anal fin, well, it doesn’t have one, which is somewhat atypical for a shark. You will find this uncommon species along the Atlantic Slope from Scotland to Senegal.

Do you love learning about all the different types of sharks? What about other creatures that inhabit the water? How can you get more information about these sharks? Always eager to learn more about the unknown? You might be interested in exploring a career as a Shark Biologist!

How do you become a Shark Biologist? First, stay in school! You would need to study hard and earn a Masters or PhD. It might seem hard or scary, but it is worth it to be able learn and become an expert in something that interests you. YOU CAN DO IT! As a Shark Biologist you will learn all about shark life processes, answering questions about how large they grow, how fast they grow, their mating rituals, the physics of sharks’ movements, behavior, diet, and diseases. There is so much to learn and discover, and if you want to, YOU can be the discoverer!

As a shark biologist, you generally would focus your studies on one species in great detail, though you may learn lots about other species as well. Because sharks in the wild can be hard to observe, it can take many years to collect information and address one question. You may use many different types of technology to help in your exploring endeavors. You would spend time in the field but you would also work in a lab as you experiment and analyze data. Then, of course, you would dedicate a good amount of time to reading and studying to further knowledge, helping you on your pathway to understanding.

So if you love the water and you are flexible, hard worker, and outside the box thinker, you might just be a Shark Biologist in the making. You can practice now by researching your very own question on sharks.


Edited by KC O’Shea


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