The carcass of a tropical species of shark (Crocodile Shark) has been found on the UK coastline for the first time in recorded history, marine experts said. They think the animal may have died due to the shock of UK's colder seas since this species is normally found in tropical waters, specifically in Brazil and Australia.
With their spindle-shaped bodies, short head, bulbous pointed snout and large eyes, these sharks tend to grow to a maximum of 1m (3.3ft) and usually weigh less than a stone.
“This time of year, with UK waters are at their coldest, this occurrence is very unusual,” said James Wright, Curator at the Aquarium. “With the crocodile shark accustomed to much warmer waters traveling so far and reaching colder waters would have caused a shock to its system and account for the cause of death.”
While it’s easy to assume that this shark might’ve accidentally strayed out of its normal environment by thousands of miles, some experts have said it is “impossible” the shark could have voluntarily swum that far north. A source even said it was more likely that the shark had been caught alive in order to be sold illegally but were dumped overboard which calls for a serious consideration.
"The Crocodile Shark is too small to be valuable in fisheries," Paul Cox, managing director of the Shark Trust. said, but added: "However, they are caught, like many other sharks, as bycatch in high seas fisheries which will likely impact on their future status."
This species was actually currently listed as “Near Threatened” in the International Union for Conservation of Nature Red List of threatened species.
"For all sharks, but especially the less common ones, any information that we can get is useful so its great that this one has been reported and identified.”