20 Shark Species Found in North Carolina


shark via unsplash

Although many more shark species reside or cross through the North Carolina ocean, here is a list of 20 shark species you can find in North Carolina.

Great White sharks, Carcharodon carcharias, notorious for their ferocity and size, grow to 21 feet and easily weigh over 2 tons!

great white shark via unsplash

Great White Shark

Tiger sharks, Galeocerdo cuvier, will eat almost anything – even the trash found in the ocean! They are known for their tiger-like stripe pattern which fades as these sharks age.

Image by Albert Kok via Wikimedia Commons

Tiger Shark

Thresher sharks, Alopias vulpinus, are known for their exceptionally long tails which can be longer than their actual body length. These solitary creatures are one of the few shark species that fully jump out of the water.

Image by bearacreative via DepositPhotos

Thresher Shark

Scalloped Hammerhead sharks, Sphyrna lewini, are differentiated from other large hammerhead species by the scallop-like notch pattern on their heads. Females measure 8.2 feet and males typically 5.9 feet.

hammerhead shark via unsplash

Scalloped Hammerhead Shark

These are some of the slowest maturing and growing sharks, only reaching adulthood at 20 years old. Making their Endangered status all the more problematic.

Dusky Shark. Image by Jen Fitschen.

Dusky Shark

Bull sharks, Carcharhinus leucas, grow as big as 10.5 feet and are often found in waters that connect to the ocean, as these sharks can live in both fresh and saltwater.

Image by Albert Kok via Wikimedia Commons

Bull Shark

Image by wrangel via depositphotos.com

Sand Tiger sharks, Carcharias taurus, are most commonly seen around shipwrecks in the area. Although they grow to 12 feet, these sharks aren’t aggressive toward humans and are normally quite docile.

Sand Tiger Shark


shark via unsplash