Great White Sharks Live Longer than Earlier Predicted
As per a latest research carried out by US research team, it has been found that adult white sharks have a longer life-span than it was believed earlier. These sharks are popularly known as great white sharks. These sharks are capable of living into their 70s, which is thrice longer than the previous estimates. The results of study were published in PLOS ONE.
Radiocarbon dating technology has been used by experts to study the backbones of four male and four female adult white sharks from the north-western Atlantic Ocean.
As per the reports by scientists at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) in Massachusetts, United States, it was found that the largest male was 73 years old and the female was 40 years old.
Ages for the three other males sharks were 9, 14, and 44 years, whereas the other females sampled had expected ages of 6, 21, and 32 years.
Li Ling Hamady, lead author of the study, says, “Our results dramatically extend the maximum age and longevity of white sharks compared to earlier studies”.
Preceding study on growth bands in sharks' bones presumed each band was equal to nearly one year. Growth bands are similar to rings in trees that denote age and growth of the tree.
The oldest white sharks that have ever been found from the south-western Pacific Ocean and the western Indian Ocean was 22-year-old and 23-year-old respectively.
However, the most up-to-date study calculated their ages by observing their bones for radiocarbon residue from nuclear tests. These tests were carried out by in the past by several nations as part of their nature preservation program, including the US and Soviet Union, during the 1950s and 1960s.