Mako Shark Facts for Kids

Shortfin mako shark (Isurus oxyrinchus) is one of the large mackerel sharks and by far the fastest-swimming shark in the world. Also known as mako shark, it can cruise at a staggering speed of about 42 mph. It can also leap into the air as far as 20 feet above the water surface. It is also one of the strongest and active fish worldwide. It has a long tail and cylindrical-shaped body. It lives offshore and dives down a deep as 150 meters.

It can grow up to a size of 10 feet and weighs around 132 to 298 pounds. The maximum size of a shortfin mako is 13 feet. The weight of the largest ever recorded shortfin mako is 1,300 pounds. At birth, the size of a pup is 70 centimeters in length.

Shortfin mako has a lifespan of around 29 to 32 years.

Male sharks mature at about 7 to 9 years while females reach maturity at 19 to 21 years of age. The pups are reproduced after every three years.

A litter has a size range of about 4 to 25 pups at a time.

Shortfin mako is found in tropical and warm-temperate waters around the world. Off west Atlantic, it is found all the way up to Uruguay from Canada and also present in Caribbean, Bermuda and Gulf of Mexico. It is also present off Indo-West Pacific including Madagascar, China, Japan and Australia.

Shortfin makos like to feed on small teleost fishes like herrings, mackerels, whiting, cod, tunas, grunts, bonitos, salmon, sea basses, lancet fish, swordfish, squid and octopus.

Typically, shortfin makos do not attack humans. However if provoked, they can be deadly because of their great speed and size.

The biggest threat to mako shark is the humans. It is a valuable creature for trading and it is hunted for its meat, oil, fins, hides, jaws and teeth. It is also commonly used in big-game sports angling in South Africa and New Zealand.

Other names: Blue Pointer, Bonito Shark

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