Inside the Chaotic World of Whale Shark Tourism loading...
Inside the Chaotic World of Whale Shark Tourism
In the Philippines, whale shark tourism is a booming business. But questions have arisen about how this activity could harm the animals.
Mass Shark Extinction Triggered by Dinosaur-Killing Asteroid loading...
Mass Shark Extinction Triggered by Dinosaur-Killing Asteroid
By studying fossilized shark teeth, researchers have found that the same asteroid that killed the non-avian dinosaurs laid groundwork for today’s shark species.
There Might Be Shark In Your Sunscreen loading...
There Might Be Shark In Your Sunscreen
Oil derived from shark livers is a common ingredient in cosmetics, and the demand for it could be putting deep-sea sharks in peril.
How the Ultimate Shark Photo Went Viral loading...
How the Ultimate Shark Photo Went Viral
A photographer takes a photo that launches his career—and then takes on a life of its own.
More Sharks Ditching Annual Migration As Ocean Warms loading...
More Sharks Ditching Annual Migration As Ocean Warms
Blacktip sharks usually travel in the tens of thousands from North Carolina to Florida. But thanks to climate change, more are staying put.
New Species Of Shark Discovered In Deep Sea loading...
New Species Of Shark Discovered In Deep Sea
The discovery of the Atlantic sixgill shark teaches us more about sharks as a whole, and could help with future conservation efforts.
About Nurse Shark

The scientific name for the nurse shark sounds like something Bilbo Baggins might have said to summon elves to his rescue: Ginglymostoma cirratum. Actually the name is a mix of Greek and Latin and means "curled, hinged mouth" to describe this shark's somewhat puckered appearance.

The origin of the name "nurse shark" is unclear. It may come from the sucking sound they make when hunting for prey in the sand, which vaguely resembles that of a nursing baby. Or it may derive from an archaic word, nusse, meaning cat shark. The most likely theory though is that the name comes from the Old English word for sea-floor shark: hurse.

Fast Facts 

Type: Fish

Diet: Carnivore

Average life span in captivity: Up to 25 years

Size: 7.5 to 9.75 ft (2.2 to 3 m)

Weight: 200 to 330 lbs (90 to 150 kg)

Group name: School or shoal

Did you know? Nurse sharks are nocturnal and will often rest on the sea floor during the day in groups of up to 40 sharks, sometimes piled on top of each other.

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