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Adorable new 'pocket shark' species identified


Posted on Monday, 22 July, 2019 | Comment icon 4 comments

As far as sharks go, this one is kind of cute. Image Credit: Mark Doosey
Scientists have discovered a new type of shark that is so small that it is possible to hold it in your hand.
Found in the Gulf of Mexico, this pint-sized shark has now been identified as the American Pocket Shark (or Mollisquama mississippiensis) following a detailed analysis by a team of researchers.

Measuring a mere 5.5 inches long, the shark has two small pouches (or pockets) on either side of its body that are capable of producing a luminous fluid, thus enabling the animal to glow in the dark.

"In the history of fisheries science, only two pocket sharks have ever been captured or reported," said Mark Grace of the NMFS Mississippi Laboratories of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).
"Both are separate species, each from separate oceans. Both are exceedingly rare."

The find emphasizes that there is still much we don't know about the ocean's wildlife.

"The fact that only one pocket shark has ever been reported from the Gulf of Mexico, and that it is a new species, underscores how little we know about the Gulf - especially its deeper waters - and how many additional new species from these waters await discovery," said Henry Bart, director of the Tulane Biodiversity Research Institute.

Source: USA Today | Comments (4)


Tags: Pocket Shark


Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #1 Posted by Jon the frog on 22 July, 2019, 17:56
Wow, now we need them with lasers, lights are not enough !
Comment icon #2 Posted by Seti42 on 22 July, 2019, 22:00
Damn, I wasted my "throw a pokeball at it" comment on that little adorable squid the other day...
Comment icon #3 Posted by pixiii on 22 July, 2019, 23:07
Oh I know right? These new little cuties are so gorgeous. A little glow-in-the-dark pocket shark, I can see plushy replica toys being made of these species along with the little piglet squid.  It's rather exciting to think scientists are still finding new species of things even today!  So amazing   Thanks @Still Watersfor posting these as always! 
Comment icon #4 Posted by Black Red Devil on 27 July, 2019, 21:58
Nice little sharky.


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