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Rare megamouth shark found in east Africa for the first time – why so little is known about it


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Rare megamouth shark found in east Africa for the first time – why so little is known about it


A rarely seen megamouth shark (Megachasma pelagios) was recently spotted in east Africa for the very first time. It was recorded in a market in Zanzibar, where it was being sold after being captured and killed. The recent sighting was only the sixth time a megamouth had ever been found off the coast of Africa. Marine biologist Rhett H. Bennett of the Wildlife Conservation Society explains the implications of the find.

What is the megamouth shark and why is it so rare?

The megamouth is a large-bodied shark found all over the world. Its name, megamouth, comes from its large mouth. Shaped a bit like a tadpole, with a huge mouth that takes up half its head, it was first discovered in 1976 when one got tangled up in a navy boat’s anchor chain in Hawaii. Since then, fewer than 280 megamouth sharks have ever been spotted anywhere in the world. There is not a lot known about this species.

Read More: ➡️ The Conversation

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