Shark week – Part 4

Skin glows like the sky

Etmopterus perryi

Smallest of the sharks

Sharks are almost always viewed as giant vicious fish. However, most sharks don’t grow more than a few feet long and only a few species are particularly dangerous, at least to humans. The Dwarf Lanternshark, Etmopterus perryi, is thought to be the smallest shark known to science with maximum sizes of 21cm. Like many animals in the deep these sharks exhibit Bioluminescence where they can produce light in special patterns on their skin from tissue known as Photophores. A mother Lanternshark raises the young inside her body, but there is no placenta or any other connection between the mother and pup, a condition known as aplacental viviparity.

The Dwarf Lanternshark. Courtesy WIkimedia Commons

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