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 Copper shark (Carcharhinus brachyurus)

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Copper shark
 Range Map

Earth Map


Phylum: Vertebates (Chordata)

Class: Carlilagenous Fishes (Chondrichthyes)
  Order: Ground sharks (Carcharhiniformes)
    Family: Requiem sharks (Carcharhinidae)
      Genus: Carcharhinus (Carcharhinus)


Scientific: Carcharhinus brachyurus
German: Bronzehai
English: Copper shark, Narrowtooth shark, Cocktail shark, Bronze Whaler, New Zealand Whaler
French: Requin cuivre
Spanish: Tiburón cobrizo, Bacota, Jaqueton del estrecho


Fairly slender shark. Moderately long snout, narrowly rounded or pointed. First dorsal fin falcate and large with a pointed apex. The origin is over or slightly anterior to the pectoral rear tips. Second dorsal fin is small and low with an origin over or slightly posterior to the anal fin"s origin. Long and falcate pectoral fins. No interdorsal ridge.


Bronze or grey,with white ventral surface. Most fins with inconspicuous darker edges and dusky to black tips. A moderately prominent white band on the side.


Western Atlantic: Gulf of Mexico, southern Brazil to Argentina. Eastern Atlantic: France to Algeria, Canary Islands. Mediterranean. Namibia, South Africa. Western Indian Ocean: South Africa. Western Pacific: Japan, China, southern Siberia, Korea, Australia, New Zealand. Eastern Pacific: Southern California to Gulf of California, Peru.


Active, from the surface down to at least 100 m depth. Although a very common species, its biology is still poorly known due to confusion with other similar looking requiem sharks.




Average size between 200 cm and 250 cm, maximum total length about 295 cm.


Viviparous, with yolksac-placenta (gives birth to live young). Litter size between 13 and 20 pups. Size at birth about 60 cm to 65 cm. Maturity is reached with a size between 200 cm and 230 cm for males, not really known for females but certainly less than 240 cm.

 Similar Species

Other requiem sharks look very similar and taxonomic features have to be used to clearly distinguish between them.


Status in the IUCN Red List(Version 2001):

Main criterion: > NT (Near Threatened)
Sub criterion:
Trend: Unknown

 Danger to Humans

Potentially dangerous.

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