Scientific name...........Carcharhinus Brevipinna
Other common names.........Blacktipped shark, Longnose gray shark,
Great blacktipped shark.
The Spinner shark is a large, shark with a slender body, long,
pointed snout and small eyes. It is named for its agile and fast
swimming behaviours such as leaping and spinning displayed during
feeding. The Spinner shark gets confused with the
because of common physical characteristics. The most obvious
difference is the position of the first dorsal fin which is closer
to the anterior part of the body in Spinner sharks, and is located
behind the pectoral fins, where as the first dorsal fin of the
Blacktip is closer to the midsection of the body. In the Spinner
shark the first dorsal fin is slightly curved and has a short rear
tip. The second dordal fin, also with a short rear tip. The Spinner
shark does not have an interdorsal ridge. The narrow, curved
pectoral fins have pointed or rounded tips, and the slender caudal
fin has a narrow rounded tip.
Spinner sharks can reach a maximum length of 9.8 feet, weighting up
to 198 pounds. Although the average size of these sharks are
approximately 6.4 feet, weighting about 123 pounds.
The Spinner shark has 15 to 16 narrow, triangular teeth in the upper
and lower jaw. The edge of the lower jaw has a distinct notch, and
the teeth of the lower jaw are more slender. The tips of the teeth
are not recurved forward, but slightly oblique.
They are a gray to bronze in color on the dorsal, fading to a white
on the ventral, with a faint white band on the sides. The second
dorsal, anal and pectoral fins, as well as the lower lobe of the
caudal fin have black or dark gray tips in large juveniles and
adults. The pelvic, first dorsal and dorsal caudal lobe may also
have black tips, but not always. The fins are unmarked in young
The spinner shark feeds primarily on pelagic fishes including
pounders, sardines, herrings, anchovies, sea catfish, stingrays,
squid, and octopus. The spinner sharks feeds by rapidly swimming
through schools of fish, spinning and leaping while snapping its
This is an active schooling shark. Vertical feeding runs through
fish schools end with a spinning leap out of the water. Highly
migratory in Gulf of Mexico ( and possibly elsewhere ). They move
inshore in spring-summer to feed and breed, possibly south and into
deeper water in winter. Some segregation by age and sex, young
prefer lower water temperatures.
World-wide in tropical seas. Coastal-pelagic on continental and
insular shelves, common close inshore from ( 0 to 326 feet ) from
the surface to the bottom.
Spinner sharks are viviparous, yolk-sac placenta, giving birth to 3
to 15 pups per litter ( increasing with female size ) born every
other year. After birth pups move shallow waters for protection from
The spinner shark is not dangerous to humans unless provoked.
Common, but inshore distribution vulnerable to fishing pressure and