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Porbeagle Shark

Lamna nasus

FAMILY: Lamnidae

ALSO KNOWN AS: Atlantic mackerel shark, Beaumaris shark, bottle-nosed shark

CONSERVATION STATUS: Endangered (worldwide)

RANGE: North Atlantic and southern Atlantic

LENGTH: 300 cm (approx. 10 feet) total length

WEIGHT: 140 kg (308.7 lbs)

Illustration ©Marc Dando

Photograph ©Wix Stock

Overview

RANGE: Known from both sides of the North Atlantic as far north as Greenland.

HABITAT: Spends winters offshore in deeper waters. When Porbeagles come closer to shore, they favor cooler waters; most often found in waters ranging from the mid-30s to low 60s F. In New England, they are most common in the Gulf of Maine during the summer months.

Map ©IUCN

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IDENTIFICATION: Streamlined but stout body with prominent keel on either side of the peduncle and a smaller secondary heel on either side of the caudal fin. Blue-grey to dark grey on top, white underside. Almost equal dorsal and ventral lobes of the caudal fin. Similar in appearance to White Sharks, but body is stockier, and teeth are not serrated. Porbeagles have a patch of white on the free rear tip of their first dorsal fin.

INTERESTING FACTSSeasonally abundant around fishing grounds of the continent slope. Feeds on squid, bony fishes, and smaller sharks. One of six regionally endothermic sharks, meaning that it can generate and retain its body heat. Internal temperature may be more than 30 F above surrounding water temperature.

IUCN CONSERVATION STATUS: Endangered

Vulnerable to extinction; regionally endangered in the Northwest Atlantic. One fish of at least 54 inches fork length (FL) is allowed per vessel per trip. Federal Highly Migratory Species fishing permit required in federal waters.

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