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Tawny Nurse Shark Video Stock Footage

The tawny nurse shark grows to a maximum length of 3.2 m (10 ft). It has a robust, cylindrical body with a broadly rounded and flattened head. The eyes are small and face laterally, with prominent ridges over them and smaller spiracles behind. There are a pair of long, slender barbels in front of the nostrils. The mouth is small, with the lower lip divided into three lobes. There are 29󈞍 tooth rows in the upper jaw and 26󈞈 tooth rows in the lower jaw, arranged in an imbricate (overlapping) pattern with the outermost 2𔃂 functional rows separated from the rest by a narrow space. Each tooth resembles a fan, with a broad base rising to a small, sharp central point flanked by 3 or more smaller cusps on both sides. As the shark ages, the teeth become relatively taller and thicker. The fourth and fifth pairs of gill slits are placed much closer together than the others. The dorsal and pelvic fins are angular, with the first dorsal fin larger than the second. The pectoral fins are narrow, pointed, and falcate (sickle-shaped) their shape separates this species from the similar-looking nurse shark. The origin of the first dorsal fin is about even with the origin of the pelvic fins, while the origin of the anal fin is even with or somewhat behind the origin of the second dorsal fin. The caudal fin has a shallow upper lobe and barely present lower lobe, comprising about a quarter of the total length in adults. The dermal denticles are diamond-shape...Learn more about Tawny Nurse Shark

View related species in family group: Shark

Animalia: Chordata: Orectolobiformes: Elasmobranchii: Ginglymostomatidae: Nebrius ferrugineus

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