Scientists discover strange species of sharks with human-like teeth

The new species has been named the “painted bull shark” (Latin: Heterodontus marshallae) and is described in paper in the journal diversity.

It belongs to the order Heterodontiformes sharks, which are characterized by a unique body shape and small horns above the eyes.

Both species are pale with 22 dark brown bands and saddles. They do, however, have slight differences in the markings on their snout and under their gill slits. “Their eggshells are different too,” says Professor Will White of the ANFC. press release.

“Despite its very similar appearance, Heterodontus marshallae is more genetically related to the Australian pig shark, Heterodontus portusjacksoni.”

But while the striped bullhead lives in shallow waters from Indonesia all the way to Japan, the painted bullhead lives off the coast of northwest Australia in waters 125 to 229 meters deep.

Strange teeth

What the dipole head shark also has in common with the stripe head shark are its teeth.

All bullhead sharks have rows of shark-like teeth in front of them, but rows of human-like molars behind them, which distinguishes them from other sharks.

This gives them large jaws in relation to their skull, which allows them to eat mollusks, as well as crush crustaceans with their molars.

The capture of a male diptych head shark in November 2022, when researchers were studying Gascoigne Marine Park in Western Australia aboard the research vessel Investigator, confirmed the discovery of a new species.

They have already examined six females and an eggshell, which suggests they may be on the trail of a new species.

But because males have external genitalia that are unique to each species, it was only after examining the 53-centimeter male that they could tell if it was a new species.

Many marine biologists are interested in the greathead shark because it is so different from other shark species.

This order of sharks resembles long-extinct fossil sharks because of similar morphology, including the backbone. “But we now know that they are not closely related,” ANFC researcher Helen O’Neill said in a press release.

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