In a press release issued by the Ohio Department of Natural Resources, they have identified the species of shark that was found in the Ohio River earlier this month as being an Atlantic Sharpnose shark.
|Shark found in the Ohio River at Manchester, OH. Early|
speculation was that it was a bull shark was incorrect. Now identified
as being an Atlantic Sharpnose. - pic credit: Ledger Independent
Pete Mohan, the Director of Animal Operations at the Akron Zoo and the former Curator of the Fishes of SeaWorld Ohio, identified the remains as an adult male Atlantic Sharpnose shark, Rhizoprionodon terraenovae. Mohan went on to say “The shark is NOT able to live in freshwater; therefore there is NO chance this was a migrant up the Mississippi.” He added that “It’s a very small species and is something likely caught while bay or shore-fishing in Florida or elsewhere in the southeast US, someone likely discarded it in the Ohio River.”
Atlantic sharpnose sharks get their name from a characteristically long snout, which is longer than the width of the mouth. The shark is commonly found from New Brunswick, Canada, through the Gulf of Mexico as well as along the coast of Brazil. Considered a small species of shark the maximum length of the Atlantic sharpnose shark is 43.3 inches (110 cm). This species feeds primarily on small bony fish, worms, shrimp, crabs, and mollusks.
The Ohio Department of Natural Resources ensures a balance between wise use and protection of our natural resources for the benefit of all. Visit the ODNR Web site at ohiodnr.com.