I apologize for my long absence, however I was extremely busy over the holidays. Luckily, I got two new pairs of shark socks, two awesome shark lighters, and just ordered my own copy of Sharkwater! <— (Once again, I recommend all of my readers to check out the film because once you see what is truly happening to the huge, graceful, fintastic friends of mine, I KNOW you will be hooked on trying to find a solution!)
But aside from my awesome holiday break, there is some huge news arising from down under! Scientists in Australia discovered a hybrid shark on January 3rd! What a way to start off the new year! What does this mean? Well, have you heard of a liger? (lion/tiger) Or possibly an Okapi? (horse/zebra/giraffe) Well the shark found off the coast of Australia was a hybrid of the common blacktip shark and the Australian blacktip shark! And they not only found one of these extreme rarities, but 54 hybrid sharks.
“To find a wild hybrid animal is unusual,” the scientists wrote in the journal Conservation Genetics. “To find 57 hybrids along 2,000 km (1,240 miles) of coastline is unprecedented.”
The great number of hybrids located in the area tells scientists that this is no coincidence or accidental mating of species. However, why would this be happening? Why would two different species that have never been known to mate, begin now, in the year 2012? Is it the end of the world?
Absolutely not! It’s just the beginning of a new one! Scientists believe that this new hybrid shark is a form of evolution in order to survive the climate change occuring around the world. While Australian blacktips were forced to stay in tropical waters ending around Brisbane, Australia,
“…the hybrid sharks swam more than 1,000 miles south to cooler areas around Sydney”
Being able to adapt to their surroundings just proves the theory of evolution as we witness it happening! Not only do the sharks travel to more fit waters, they are also larger than most Australian blacktip sharks.
“The team also found that several sharks that genetically identified as Australian blacktips were longer than the maximum length typically found for the species. Australian blacktips reach 5.2 feet; common blacktips in that part of the world reach 6.6 feet.”
These adaptations will allow the sharks to prevail in the new conditions created by the ever changing world that we live in. And while many animals are becoming extinct or severely endangered, blacktip sharks are finding new ways to outsmart climate change and continue to survive in new environments. GO SHARKS! But be warned, we aren’t going to be seeing any Great White Tiger Sharks or Lemon Hammerheads any times soon. The Australian blacktip and the common blacktip have very similar anatomies and therefore are capable of mating.
Even though sharks seems to be hated by the majority of people because they are misunderstood, there can be no denying that they are doing something right if they are managing to evolve right before our eyes into a more efficient species. Sharks are a little more than brainless man-eaters, huh?
Well that’s all from me today! Look out for my next post about awesome shark merchandise and where to get it!