Monday, August 3, 2020

New Species of Walking Shark Found in Indonesia

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Nature never ceases to amaze as we learn new things everyday. Just recently there has been a newly discovered species of shark that can walk on the ocean floor and on land with its fins. Check out this video from Conservation International of the shark.

These tropical sharks live in the waters of northern Australia and New Guinea. It’s called the Hemiscyllium Ocellatum or the Epaulette shark. Its description was updated in December of 2019 but it’s just now making it’s way from the sea across the internet. Which is how we found the video.

What’s interesting about this shark is that can survive on land if it gets stranded. Since it can use its fins to walk it can combat the environmental atmosphere on land. It likes to search for food in shallow pools and sometimes can get stranded. If they are found by a passerby that can put them back into the water it is ideal because they can only go without oxygen for an hour. So that severely limits their capacity for survival.

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They are not dangerous to people and are quite docile when picked up. I bet when you clicked on this you thought, “walking sharks? What’s next 2020?” But these little guys are pretty ok. Since 2008 four new species of this kind of shark has been found. The four new shark species were discovered in the tropical waters of the Indo-Australian Archipelago. They are usually under 3.5 feet and are spotted in design.

If you do see one in the wild it’s ok to pick them up and return them to the ocean. They may wiggle a little bit but you should be fine. You should be able to recognize them from their awkward way of walking.

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