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Mako Shark

Line of sharks

Photo of Mako Shark

Map showing the Mako Shark's habitat
There are two different species of Mako Sharks, the Long-finned Mako Shark and the Short-finned Mako Shark. The Long-finned Mako Shark can be up to 14 ft. and are very rare and this is why I will describe the Short-finned Mako Shark from now.

The Short-finned Mako Shark (Mako Shark on the rest of the page) have the latin name Isurus Oxyrinchus, lives in in warm and temperate waters between 50 degrees north and 50 degrees south. Mako Sharks can also be found near Australia and New Zealand. Mako Sharks live out in the open ocean in deep waters down to 500 meters of depth, though Mako Sharks can often be seen in the surface hunting prey. Mako Sharks are seldom caught on deeper waters than 200 meters.

The Mako Shark can be up to 13 ft. long and weight up to 740 pounds. The shark is long, slim and very streamlined, with a dark bluish grey back and a white belly. Old Mako Sharks gets a more dark greyish back. Mako Sharks cannot be older than 45 years old. The Mako Shark has a big tail shaped like a half-moon. Mako Sharks have many and long razor sharp teeth that make the Mako Shark cable of holding and shaking its prey into pieces.

The Mako Shark must be treated with great respect when it is caught. The Mako Shark is likely to use its long sharp teeth to bite in everything near it, and they can do much damage on people and material. There are some examples of sharks that bite small fishing boats into pieces. Mako Sharks can reach a speed of 45 mph when they attack a prey from below, by doing that the Mako Shark crushes its prey. It is the big tail and the slim body that gives it the great power, but also the shark's metabolism that makes the temperature inside the body of the shark warmer than the surrounding water and makes it so fast.

The Mako Shark feet on big fast species of fish like Swordfish, Marlin, Tuna and other sharks. The Mako Shark do not always kill their prey immediately, but the Mako Shark bite the tail of the prey so it cannot flee and the prey will also bleed to death because of the wound.

Fishery for Mako Sharks is with longlines and many Mako Sharks are caught as by-catch when people fish for Tuna and Swordfish. Mako Sharks are caught as an edible fish and their meat is salmon-coloured, very fine and high quality. The liver is used for oil in vitamins, the skin is made into leather, the fins are used for soup and the jaws are used for souvenirs.

The Mako Shark is a very popular fish for sport fishery. Big competitions are hold where Mako Sharks are caught and released again. When a fisher get a Mako Shark on the hook the shark will struggle very much to get free. The Mako Shark can jump up to 6 metres above the surface to try to get free.

Mako Sharks become sexually mature, when they are 7-8 years old. Mako Sharks are pregnant for 15 to 18 month and late in the winter or first in the summer the sharks give birth to 10-18 young ones. When they have given birth they cannot be pregnant for a year.

Link to the shark index