Cetorhinus maximus

Cetorhinus maximus
Basking Shark – Cetorhinus maximus Photo Credit: G.W. Link
FamilyScientific NameAuthorYearCommon Name
CetorhinidaeCetorhinus maximus(Gunnerus)1765Basking Shark

Cetorhinus maximus

Unique Characters: A very large shark. Head with 5 extremely long gill slits, almost meeting at the midline above and below. Unique, long, bristle-like gill rakers formed from modified dermal denticles, in rows along the internal gill openings and serving as plankton strainers (occasionally absent in individuals in which they have been shed and new rakers have not yet developed). Two dorsal fins, the first on the back above the space between pectoral and pelvic fins, the second less than 1/3 the size of first. Anal fin present. Caudal fin much less than half total length, nearly symmetrical and crescentic, with a strong lower lobe. Caudal peduncle strongly depressed, with strong keels on sides.

Similar Species: None.

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