(Carcharodon Carcharias)

This is the shark everyone loves to hate. The star of Jaws! Often called the White Pointer or White Death in Australia, this shark is the one most people think of when the hear the word 'shark'. A large White Shark is capable of eating a person not just biting them. The thought of being eaten alive scares people so much that they become irrational about anything to do with sharks. The shark is a fascinating creature, surrounded by myth and misconception. To many, sharks symbolize the very essence of ruthlessness, representing the ultimate savages of the natural world. Though many people would rather not intentionally socialize with these fearsome predators of the depths, Sharks and their direct predecessors have been swimming in the world's oceans for well over 300 million years, and were going about their business long before dinosaurs walked the Earth.


GREAT WHITE SHARK .. DIVE (THE RIP) .. (THE LONSDALE WALL) .. (THE HEADS) .. (PORT PHILLIP HEADS)The Great White is believed to live up to 100 years of age. This is much more than was previously thought. It has always been regarded as the most dangerous of all sharks but it is now thought that a number of attacks by the Tiger Shark have been wrongly blamed on this shark.
The greatest number of attacks by the
Great White is surprisingly, in California in USA. Australia runs a far third after South Africa, but only just recently there has been two fatal attacks occur here in 2000. Luckily, we have not had any confrontations with "The Great White" in The Rip at Pt.Phillip Heads.

Most of the largest Great Whites have been found in South Australia and this is still one of the best spots in the world to go and see these sharks. The largest officially recorded was 6.4 metres (21 feet) long and weighed 3312 kg/ 7302lb. There have been many exaggerated claims of specimens over 30 feet but most of these have been proved to be false. It is currently believed the maximum these sharks can grow is up to 25 feet. In 1978, a shark was caught which was measured at 9 metres (29.5 feet) but it was not officially verified.

The Great White gives birth to live young unlike many other sharks that lay eggs. The newly born shark gets no help from the mother and must fend for itself. A newborn Great White is believed to be around four feet long from unborn sharks found in a pregnant female. I did see a photos of these and they were just like a miniature Great White and bigger than a lot of sharks are when adult. The smallest White shark ever caught was 47" long and thought to be newly born. They grow about 10"/25cm each year and reach maturity in about 10 years.

The Great White belongs to a family called Mackerel Sharks.There are five sharks in the family including the Mako. I understand they got this name because their tail shape is similar in design to the Mackerel. The Mackerel sharks along with the Tresher shark can regulate their body temperature so they can be warmer than the ocean temperature around them. GREAT WHITE SHARK

The Great White has some of the most highly developed senses of any creature including other sharks. Small holes around the sharks head called Ampullae of Lorenzini, look like skin pores. They are filled with a jelly like substance and it is by these that a Great White shark can pick up electrical charges as small as .005 microvolt. They can detect prey just by the electrical field generated by a beating heart or gill action. They can also detect fish that are hiding.