Probably the most easy to recognize of the requiem sharks, the tiger gets its name from dark spots and vertical bars that run the length of the body. The anterior portion of the body is stout but becomes increasingly slender posterior to the abdomen. The tiger shark has a robust head with large eyes and a conspicuously blunt snout. The mouth is large with long labial furrows at the corners of the jaw. The broad first dorsal fin originates posterior to the pectoral axil.

Though the tiger shark is thought to be a predominately coastal species, its geographic distribution includes all tropical and temperate waters around the world, so some individuals must migrate between island groups. Experts consider tiger sharks to be ‘near threatened’ with extinction, noting the reduction in their numbers from targeted and accidental catch in fisheries. Their reputation as a species that bites people (though very rarely) makes them a target of population control efforts in some places, a practice that is not supported by scientists anywhere that it occurs.

Weighing 1300 pounds or more and growing up to 15 feet, the tiger shark is the fourth-largest shark on earth. (Only whale sharks, basking sharks, and great whites get bigger.) On top of being big, tiger sharks are also pretty bizarre: They literally eat garbage, give birth to massive litters—and one of them was a player in Australia’s greatest unsolved murder mystery.

Lifespan & Reproduction

Tiger sharks have an average lifespan of 27 years in the wild. Their assumed life lasts between 20-50 years. Males reach sexual maturity first at seven years old, while females achieve it at eight.

Females mate every three years with multiple partners throughout their lives. In the northern hemisphere, fertilization happens between November and January. On the other hand, it occurs from March to May in the southern hemisphere.

Tiger sharks breed with internal fertilization. The male places a clapper, which guides the sperm, inside the female’s cloaca. His teeth hold her still as it occurs, which leads to discomfort on the female.

The embryos gestate for 14-16 months, feeding on the female’s yolk sac and uterine secretions. Tiger sharks are the only ovoviviparous Carcharhinidae as the babies come out hatched. Litters can have between 10-80 pups about 20-30 inches long.

Size, Age, And Growth
One of the largest sharks, the tiger shark commonly reaches a length of 325-425 cm (10-14 ft) and weighs over 385-635 kg (850-1400 lbs). Length at birth varies from 51-76 cm (1-1.5 ft). Males reach sexual maturity at 226-290 cm (7-9 ft), while females become mature at 250-325 cm (8-10 ft) (Compagno et al. 2005). The largest specimens attain lengths of over 5.5 m (18 ft) and are estimated to weigh over 900 kg (2000 lbs).

Where Are Tiger Sharks Found?

Tiger sharks live in tropical waters around North America, South America, Australia, India, China, Indonesia, and Africa.

How Big Is A Tiger Shark?

The biggest Tiger shark can be up to 18 ft (5.5 m) in length, making it one of the largest shark species. The Tiger shark size is two times smaller than the Great white sharks.

How Fast Can A Tiger Shark Swim?

The Tiger shark speed is around 20 mph. The Galeocerdo cuvier usually swims slowly but increases its speed to catch its prey.

How Much Does A Tiger Shark Weigh?

The Galeocerdo cuvier weight is around 2,000 lb (900 kg).

What Are Their Male And Female Names Of The Species?

The male species are known as male Tiger sharks, and the female species are known as female Tiger sharks.

What Do Tiger Sharks Eat?

Some of the prey of tiger sharks includes squid, clams, sea birds, rays, sea turtles, and smaller sharks.

What Type Of Animal Is A Tiger Shark?

Galeocerdo cuvier sharks are aggressive and eat anything they find and are easy to capture. They also feed on plastic, fishing gear, and other trash found in the ocean. Though they feed on many marine animals, they are found to attack and eat the Hawaiian monk seals and the green turtles regularly on their nesting sites near the beach in some areas like Hawaii.

Social interaction is not found in Galeocerdo cuvier sharks, even within their kind. They are individual and aggressive hunters, often found to attack other sharks and humans swimming near the beach areas. Fatal shark attacks have been reported in many areas. Their large size often leads to fatal accidents and is often found to bite people. Compared to other sharks, the Galeocerdo cuvier is an excellent hunter with good eyesight and an extremely sharp smell.

What Class Of Animal Does A Tiger Shark Belong To?

The Tiger sharks are warm, saltwater sharks that belong to the class Chondrichthyes and the family Carcharhinidae.

How Many Tiger Sharks Are There In The World?

The Tiger sharks belong to the genus Galeocerdo and order Carcharhiniformes. It is the wealthiest order of shark species with more than 270 species. But the exact number of Tiger sharks is not available.

What Is A Tiger Shark’s Habitat?

The Tiger shark habitat comprises tropical and temperate ocean waters and shallow coastal areas. They prefer thick and opaque coastal waters to find different prey species and often gather in these areas. Sometimes, the Galeocerdo cuvier sharks are found far from their typical habitat. Many anglers have encountered them during the summer months in the offshore areas of the Canadian ocean waters while fishing for swordfish and tuna in or near the Gulf stream area. According to the change in season, the Galeocerdo cuvier sharks are known to migrate. During the cold winter season, they swim to the tropical waters from the temperate ocean waters and vice versa when summer arrives.

Who Do Tiger Sharks Live With?

The Galeocerdo cuvier sharks love to live alone. They are gathered in groups only during the mating season or collective feeding when they trap a large prey. Since they are migratory species, they are also found to swim to thousands of miles during the winter season to warmer ocean waters in groups.

How Do They Reproduce?

The breeding of Tiger sharks occurs by internal fertilization. The females give birth to 10-80 pups. Although the females give birth to live young ones, the babies’ placenta is not connected like in mammals. Instead, the embryos of the babies are developed inside the egg till its time to hatch. After the babies are developed and ready to hatch, the female Tiger sharks give birth.

After the pups are born, their food mainly comprises small fishes and some invertebrates. Although the adult Galeocerdo cuvier rarely has predators, the pups may be eaten by adult Tiger sharks and other big sharks. For this reason, pups and adults are often found in different habitats.

The adult Galeocerdo cuvier species prefer open coastal areas and coral reefs. The pups are found in bays and estuaries. This difference in habitat is mainly to protect the young ones from predators.

What Is Their Conservation Status?

The conservation status of the Galeocerdo cuvier species is mentioned as Near Threatened. Their number is constantly decreasing. Humans hunt them for their fins, skin, and the oil found in the liver.

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