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Where are sharks found?

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Quick Answer

According to the Shark Foundation, sharks are found in most of the Earth’s oceans and seas. The highest shark biodiversity occurs in the warm waters of the tropics, but many species are found in Arctic and Antarctic waters as well. Some sharks, for example bull sharks, are even capable of swimming up freshwater rivers and streams.

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Full Answer

Many of the most famous sharks, such as tiger sharks, prefer warm waters, such as those near Hawaii, Indonesia and Mexico. However, like many other species, they engage in yearly migrations. According to Wildscreen Arkive, tiger sharks move into temperate waters during the warmer months, before traveling back to the tropics for the winter. National Geographic explains that great white sharks endure some of the longest migrations. In 2005, researchers documented a great white shark completing a 12,400-mile journey. Starting off the coast of Africa and ending in Australia, the trip holds the record for the longest shark migration.

Greenland, porbeagle, and thresher sharks are found in the Arctic Ocean, according to the Shark Foundation. The Antarctic region is home to even greater diversity; 39 different species, including dusky, sandbar and whale sharks, have been documented in the cold waters.

Some sharks prefer to inhabit the open ocean, far from land. For example, oceanic white tips become more common with increasing distance from the shore.

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