'Really, really old' GREENLAND SHARK which prefers Arctic's cold water spotted in Caribbean
A different kind of fish was caught by a group of researchers while they were tagging tiger sharks off the southern coast of Belize. The researchers were stunned to see the giant with black skin and pale blue eyes. However, later on it was found out that the fish was a Greenland shark. The shark which is typically found in the Arctic and can live to be over 500 years old.
The incident happened back in April 22, when Devanshi Kasana, a PhD candidate at the Florida International University along with her team, were working with members of the Belizean shark fishing community to set lines along Glovers Reef, located about 30 miles off the coast when they found this unsual species. Later on, a report regarding the discovery was published on Marine Biology on July 15 that claimed that the shark was actually the first Greenland shark to be discovered in the Western Caribbean. Considering how rare this species is, Kasana considered it to be as "sheer luck". "If we were to catch another individual it would be sheer luck, we don't set our lines in a way that targets Greenland sharks," Kasana said.
While the team of scientists were tagging the tiger sharks, Kasana explained that a black figure started to appear in front of their eyes. "It was just very surprising and confusing," she said. "As soon as it entered our field of vision, we saw a black figure that was getting bigger and bigger. When it came to the surface, none of the crew with all of their combined fishing experience had seen anything like that." To watch the video, click here
Kasana further said that the shark looked "really, really old" and had black skin with pale blue eyes. The discovery was highly unexpected because these sharks are mainly found in the Arctic. These sharks, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, are the world's longest-living vertebrates, possibly living for more than 500 years. And that's only an estimate because there's no way of knowing for sure.
The fact that they live to be so old may have something to do with their slow pace of life. Greenland sharks grow about one-third of an inch per year and can reach lengths of more than 20 feet. Researchers believe sharks do not reach sexual maturity until well after their first 100 years of life.
Some scientists, according to Kasana, believe that the Greenland shark can be found all over the world if one knows where to look. They prefer cold water, which is why they live in the Arctic. They've also been discovered as far south as Georgia, thousands of feet beneath the ocean's surface. According to the theory, the closer the sharks are to the equator, the deeper researchers must go to find them. According to NOAA, they go over 7,000 feet down.