Swimming next to a Galapagos Shark is an experience that will definitely create a sense of adventure accomplishment.
Galapagos Hammerhead Shark
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Sharks are fish that also inhabit the waters of the Galapagos Islands, and when seen, they generate in visitors an experience that combines some degree of fear, adrenaline and reputation. Only extreme sports generate this reaction.
During the varied aquatic programs offered by different travel companies, you can find sharks in Galapagos in several occasions, there are weeks of course, that we don't see them at all, but generally some island site will give you the opportunity (and privilege) of seeing them.
It is really too bad that the sharks' reputation has given them the nickname "man eaters", since out of the 350 species of sharks, few actually have attacked humans.
Originally the shark in Galapagos was named Carcharinus galapagensis Snodgrass and Heller 1905, followed by a name change to Carcharias galapagensis Snodgrass and Heller 1905.
Later that same year, this shark received its currently valid name of Carcharhinus galapagensis (Snodgrass and Heller, 1905).
The genus name Carcharhinus is derived from the Greek "karcharos" = sharpen and "rhinos" = nose.
The species name galapagensis is derived from the location, Galapagos Islands Ecuador, where the described specimens were caught in 1905.
Size: 10 - 12 feet in length.
Diet: Galapagos sharks eat prey taken from the ocean floor including bottom-dwelling squid, fish and octopus.
Habitat: Galapagos sharks live tropical seas at depths ranging from 16 - 200 feet deep.
Reproduction: At birth shark pups can be approximately 22 - 32 inches long and a litter can be from 6-16 pups.
The young pups stay in shallow waters to avoid being eaten by adult Galapagos.
The Galapagos Islands shark is similar to the Grey Reef Shark but with a rounder head and thicker body towards the tail area, can be difficult to identify.
These sharks are only found in a very isolated spots in the world.
The Galapagos shark can grow to nearly 2 feet and its upper teeth are triangular and serrated which means this shark should be considered dangerous.
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Galapagos sharks have been known to go as deep as 200 feet. Young sharks will go into very shallow water and tend to prefer to swim just off the bottom.
They normally stay in one small area and usually are quite numerous in those areas.
The Galapagos Islands shark is brownish-gray upper body and white ventral surface with or without dusky markings on the fins. An inconspicuous white band can sometimes be seen on the flanks.
The Islands shark is currently not listed by the World Conservation Union(IUCN) as endangered or threatened at this time.
The IUCN is a global union of states, governmental agencies, and non-governmental organizations in a partnership that assesses the conservation status of species.
In the Islands it is surely a privilege to enter the marine environment where Galapagos sharks live.
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These experiences will definitely create a sense of adventure-accomplishment, and many will speak about them for years to come, more so if it was their first time ever with a hammerhead shark, white-tip reef shark, and the colossal Galapagos Whale Shark (largest fish on Earth).
The marine highlights hold a unique feature for the Galapagos Islands: It's the only place on Earth that compacts tropical water fish, subtropical water fish, Galapagos Sea Lions and even Tropical Penguins. Where else?
Thus, having a mask in Galapagos is just a small invitation to a marine realm full of surprises, highly educational, and complete with unforgettable memories.
These experiences not only generate satisfaction and emotion, but they also make you appreciate more why the protection of such marine environment deserves first priority in the Galapagos National Park.
Without a doubt, the waters of the Islands are a source of education, fun, exercise, and most of all, extremely high satisfaction. Splash!
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Our adventure Galapagos Tour Package will let you discover the beauty and excitement of these Islands. If you have any questions about the Galapagos Shark, You can post them on our Galapagos FAQ Page or if you want to request more information about our "Galapagos Tours", You can Contact us here