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Great white shark

Class: Chondrichthyes
Family: Lamnidae
Genus species: Carcharodon carcharias

Maximum known length: 21 feet
Maximum known weight: 2,664 lbs

Habitat: Found in coastal surface waters in all major oceans.

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Information: These sharks are ovoviviparous, the eggs developing in the female's uterus, hatching there and continuing to develop until they are born, at which point they are perfectly capable predators. The young are about 5 feet long when born. Great whites eat primarily fishes and pinnipeds such as seals and sea lions. The only known animals known to attack this species are other Great Whites, Sperm Whales, humans and Killer Whales.

These sharks are responsible for a number of fatalities in humans, but most attacks are cases of "mistaken identity" with the shark being attracted because of thrashing around that causes it to think it's attacking a fish, or because from below a body surfer looks like a seal. Most attacks also occur in waters with low visibility. Great White Sharks, like many other sharks have rows of teeth behind the main ones, allowing any that break off to be replaced rapidly.

Great White Sharks achieved an even higher notoriety when Steven Spielberg released the movie, Jaws in 1975. These sharks have an extinct relative, Carcharodon megalodon, which could probably reach sizes of 60 feet or more and is currently known only from its teeth. From time to time it is suggested that Megalodon survives to this day. However, while Megalodon fossils are widespread and plentiful, not a single tooth has been found from recent times.