Q:

What eats tiger sharks?

A:

Quick Answer

Tiger sharks are apex predators, but they are susceptible to being preyed upon by other apex predators -- especially humans. In addition to being consumed by humans as a result of finning and fishing operations, tiger sharks are eaten by great white sharks, killer whales and other tiger sharks.

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Full Answer

Each year, millions of sharks fall victim to finning by humans, whereby the fins are cut off to be used for shark fin soup and the carcass is thrown overboard. In addition to their fins, which serve as the main ingredient in shark fin soup, tiger sharks are also harvested for their livers and flesh.

Great white sharks, the world's largest predatory fish, also kill and eat tiger sharks, largely because of the great white shark's size advantage over the tiger shark. Killer whales, also called orcas, feed on tiger sharks as an opportunistic meal and actively hunt tiger sharks that attempt to compete for killer whale prey items.

Tiger sharks also eat other tiger sharks. The tiger shark is ovoviviparous, meaning shark pups develop in eggs inside the mother's womb, and once they are born, they must swim away from the mother to avoid being eaten. Even as the pup matures into an adult, there is a persistent threat of being consumed by larger sharks of any species.

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