Among sharks inhabiting the colder, lonelier depths of the ocean, none are as large, strong, fast or resilient as the blue shark. Known among scientists as Prionace glauca, this species of shark features a characteristically sharp, slim and aerodynamic shaped body; it can move quite fast, swimming long distances and not being tied to a single habitat. Blue sharks also have a unique and interesting reproduction cycle that stands out among other species of sharks.
Blue sharks are most well-known for their remarkable speed, agility and endurance. Although they mostly feed on small fish and invertebrates, including octopus and cuttlefish, these sharks have been known to go after
larger prey as well, and even whale blubber and meat have been retrieved from the stomachs of some captured shark specimens. A highly efficient hunter that isn’t tied down by a specific place or type of habitat, this shark will pursue its prey for many kilometers, and although their speed sometimes makes them hard to track, blue sharks have been observe to use their speed and endurance very intelligently in the pursuit of their prey.
The blue shark looks similar to other larger shark species, but has a few distinctive characteristics that set it apart. For one, it features a somewhat longer, pointier head and pectoral fins that resemble those of tiger sharks – although they are somewhat more streamlined. In terms of their size, blue sharks are usually about 2 meters in length, although some of the largest specimens of these species can grow up to a length of more than 3.8 meters. Their distinctive, deep blue skin and lighter blue shades on the sides are responsible for the shark’s name, its illusive camouflage enabling it to get quite close to its prey before attacking.
Even though these sharks don’t necessarily have a single type of habitat that they constantly return to, they do require certain conditions to be adequate in order to survive. They are mostly found anywhere in the world in the somewhat colder waters going 350 meters deep in tropical, subtropical and temperate regions. The shark may approach the surface and even jump up to spot possible pray on occasions, especially in temperate waters, where it stays closer to the coastline. It can survive in waters as cold as those of southern Chile or Norway, and as warm as those of the Central Pacific. Basically, you can find blue sharks just about anywhere except Antarctica.
The reproduction cycles of blue sharks are extremely fascinating, to say the least. They are viviparous, delivering up to 130 pups at a time, and the gestation period is quite long, ranging between 9 months and 1 year. The mating ritual is more aggressive than in the case of other species of sharks, and females of this species have even developed stronger, thicker skin to resist the males’ sharp teeth as they grip the females hard with their teeth to complete the mating process. The male blue shark doesn’t withdraw its aggressive grip until the sperm is placed inside the female, but, despite this fact, bite scarring never becomes an issue due to the reinforced skin of the female.