Author: Mark Kaufman
Dean Grubbs thinks great white sharks are boring.
The veteran shark scientist, who has researched different shark species for 30 years, is vastly more intrigued by the little-seen dominant predator of the deep, dark, tropical and temperate oceans: the sixgill shark (most sharks have five gills).
“These things are way cooler than any white shark,” said Grubbs, an associate director of research at Florida State University’s Coastal and Marine Laboratory.
Sixgills are ancient beasts of the dark ocean, often inhabiting waters some 700 to 3,200 feet (200 to 1,000 meters) below the sea, whereas white sharks are a dominant species found near the surface, sometimes to beachgoers’ dismay. “[Sixgills] are the biggest, dominant predator of these depths,” Grubbs said. The sharks often grow to 16 feet in length, but can become even larger.
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