Latin name

Carcharhinus leucas

Other names

Freshwater whaler, river whaler.


The Bull shark gets its name from its bull-like head and is known for its heavy body and short snout, which appears very broad and rounded underneath. Gray or dull brown above and pale below, the shark has a large first dorsal fin that begins above the middle pectoral fin, and the upper tail blade is much larger than the lower one.


It is a species native to Lake Nicaragua in Nicaragua and has become known as a man-eater because it has been implicated in repeated attacks on humans. Also known as the Zambezi shark in South African waters, it is one of the three most dangerous sharks in this region, along with great white and tiger sharks, because of its abundance in coastal habitats where attacks on humans are more likely. Bull shark readily bites natural bait. Unlike other sharks that rise to the surface, it often stays in deeper water and wrestles hard. Bull sharks are widely distributed. They are found in the western Atlantic Ocean from Massachusetts to southern Brazil and in the eastern Pacific from southern Baja California, Mexico, to Ecuador and possibly Peru.


Bull shark is also called freshwater whaler and river whaler because it is most often found in the coastal zone around river mouths and can adapt to life in fresh water.


Usually growing to a length of 6 to 9 feet, it can reach 12 feet and weigh more than 500 pounds. The world record for all tackle was previously held by a 490-pound shark caught off the coast of Alabama in 1986, but it was surpassed in 2001 by a 697-pound shark caught off the coast of Kenya.

Life history and Behavior

No information

Food and feeding habits

No information


No information

Phylum Chordata
Class Chondrichthyes
Squad Carcharhiniformes
Family Carcharhinidae
Genus Carcharhinus
Species C. leucas
Conservation status Vulnerable
Habitat Littoral
Life span, years 17
Maximum body weight, kg 450
Maximum length, cm 350
Sailing speed, m/s No information
Threat to people Edible
Way of eating Predator

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Shark, Bull

Tags: Shark, Bull