This essay has been submitted by a student. This is not an example of the work written by professional essay writers.

The Goblin Shark (mitsukurina Owstoni): Rare Species of Deep-sea Shark

downloadDownload printPrint

The goblin shark (Mitsukurina owstoni) is a rare species of deep-sea shark. Sometimes called a “living fossil”, it is the only extant representative of the family Mitsukurinidae, a lineage some 125 million years old. This pink-skinned animal has a distinctive profile with an elongated, flattened snout, and highly protrusible jaws containing prominent nail-like teeth. It is usually between 3 and 4 m (10 and 13 ft) long when mature, though it can grow considerably larger.

Goblin sharks inhabit upper continental slopes, submarine canyons, and seamounts throughout the world at depths greater than 100m (330 ft), with adults found deeper than juveniles. Various anatomical features of the goblin shark, such as its flabby body and small fins, suggest that it is sluggish in nature. This species hunts for teleost fishes, cephalopods, and crustaceans both near the seafloor and in the middle of the water column. Its long snout is covered with ampullae of Lorenzini that enable it to sense minute electric fields produced by nearby prey, which it can snatch up by rapidly expanding its jaws. Small numbers of goblin sharks are unintentionally caught by deepwater fisheries. The International Union for Conservation of Nature(IUCN) has assessed it as Least Concern, despite its rarity, citing its wide distribution and low incidence of capture. So how do goblin sharks hunt for prey when they live in such a deep, dark environment? Well, they, like all sharks, have a specialized sense organ called the “ampullae of Lorenzini,” which is located on a shark’s snout. The ampullae of Lorenzini allows the shark to detect even very weak electrical impulses given off by the living things around them. The long snout of the goblin shark means that its ampullae of Lorenzini are widely distributed along the length and are particularly sensitive, compared to those of other species.

Since the flabby, short-finned goblin shark likely isn’t much of a speed demon, it probably doesn’t go after its prey like, say, the super-fast great white shark. Rather, scientists believe that its low-density flesh and its enormous, oily liver serve to make the goblin shark extra buoyant so that it can ambush its prey by floating closer and closer with minimal fin movements, making it hard for dinner to sense its presence. Once it’s close enough, the jaws extend out and open up, and the shark either grabs its pretty or sucks it in like an underwater vacuum cleaner. The goblin shark surprisingly will not harm a human but mostly because they live so deep in the ocean. If the goblin shark is keep in human captivity it’s life will be very shortly lived. The goblin shark is not extinct it’s least concerned.

Remember! This is just a sample.

You can get your custom paper by one of our expert writers.

Get custom essay

121 writers online


Remember: This is just a sample from a fellow student.

Your time is important. Let us write you an essay from scratch

experts 450+ experts on 30 subjects ready to help you just now

delivery Starting from 3 hours delivery

Find Free Essays

We provide you with original essay samples, perfect formatting and styling

Cite this Essay

To export a reference to this article please select a referencing style below:

The goblin shark (Mitsukurina owstoni): rare species of deep-sea shark. (2019, January 15). GradesFixer. Retrieved March 29, 2023, from
“The goblin shark (Mitsukurina owstoni): rare species of deep-sea shark.” GradesFixer, 15 Jan. 2019,
The goblin shark (Mitsukurina owstoni): rare species of deep-sea shark. [online]. Available at: <> [Accessed 29 Mar. 2023].
The goblin shark (Mitsukurina owstoni): rare species of deep-sea shark [Internet]. GradesFixer. 2019 Jan 15 [cited 2023 Mar 29]. Available from:
copy to clipboard

Where do you want us to send this sample?

    By clicking “Continue”, you agree to our terms of service and privacy policy.


    Be careful. This essay is not unique

    This essay was donated by a student and is likely to have been used and submitted before

    Download this Sample

    Free samples may contain mistakes and not unique parts


    Sorry, we could not paraphrase this essay. Our professional writers can rewrite it and get you a unique paper.



    Please check your inbox.

    We can write you a custom essay that will follow your exact instructions and meet the deadlines. Let's fix your grades together!


    Hi there!

    Are you interested in getting a customized paper?

    Check it out!
    Don't use plagiarized sources. Get your custom essay. Get custom paper

    We can help you get a better grade and deliver your task on time!

    • Instructions Followed To The Letter
    • Deadlines Met At Every Stage
    • Unique And Plagiarism Free
    Order your paper now