Quote LIS

Estuaries such as Long Island Sound are among the most valuable ecosystems in the world. The Sound supports diverse marine life, including most of the fish and shellfish we value as food ..."
– Connecticut Sea Grant
Conservation & Research



Shark - sand tiger shark

 sand tiger

Common Name: Sand tiger shark

Latin Name: Carcharias taurus

Size/weight: Up to 10 or 11 feet long, though usually not that long.  Weight is up to 350 pounds.

Range:  Most warmer oceans, except the Eastern Pacific, including Long Island Sound. They're the largest of the native species of sharks in the Sound.

Habitat:  Found most often in coastal waters, though sand tiger sharks can sometimes be found in deeper offshore waters.

Diet:  What’s not on the sand tiger shark’s menu?  Although they will eat almost anything (fish, crustaceans, etc…), because they are a slow-moving shark they tend to eat very little (in proportion to their body size).

Predators:  Humans and other sharks.

Description:  Sand tiger sharks are light brown to grey in color, with lighter shading on their undersides.  This “countershading” is a sort of camouflage that makes the animal more difficult for its prey to see.  A distinguishing factor is that, unlike most other sharks, the sand tiger shark’s two dorsal fins are about the same size.  And its teeth are visible at all times.

Of Interest: Sand tiger shark pups practice in vitro cannibalism.  While still inside its mother, pups consume each other and any unhatched eggs until only one survives. And with only one pup born at a time, the sand tiger shark recovers slowly from population setbacks.

See them in the Ocean Beyond the Sound exhibit »



Mission: The Maritime Aquarium inspires people of all ages to appreciate and protect
the Long Island Sound ecosystem and the global environment through living exhibits,
marine science, and environmental education.

10 North Water Street  •  Norwalk, CT 06854
Tel: 203-852-0700

The Maritime Aquarium at Norwalk is a not-for-profit 501(c)(3) corporation.

© 2016 The Maritime Aquarium at Norwalk

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