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Namibia


Coppershark

Namibia

Introduction: Coppersharks (Carcharhinus brachyurus) are sometimes called bronze whalers, an alleged name derived from their habit of feeding on whale carcasses or the narrow-tooth shark. Features include well-developed fins, a smooth back and pointed triangular teeth. They favour temperate to cooler waters and are primarily a shallow water species. Large numbers follow sardine shoals in the winter. Carcharhinus is an ancient name meaning 'jagged shark', referring to their rasp-like skin. Brachyurus means 'short-bodied'.

Distribution: Found from the Kunene River mouth south along the Namibian coast to Mwe Bay, Swakopmund, Luderitz to the Orange River.

Diet: Feeds near the bottom for gurnard and sole, small sharks, skates and squid are also taken.

Colouration: A coppery sheen (hence the name) extending along the top and sides of the body.

Breeding: Young are born in litters of 13 to 20.

Max size: 300cm. Max weight: 192kg.

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