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A shark swims in the Wild Reef exhibit at Shedd Aquarium.

Sharks

Bearing horns and hammers, stripes and spots, sharks come in all shapes and sizes. They’re found in every ocean, in habitats ranging from shallow tropical reefs to the deep, cold seafloor. They have diverse diets, too: Some munch on mollusks, some hunt other sharks and the largest shark eats the tiniest food—plankton! Whatever they eat, these predators are vital to maintaining healthy and thriving ocean ecosystems.

Standing Up for Sharks

Sharks are vital to maintaining healthy ocean ecosystems, but these magnificent predators are under threat of extinction from overfishing and other human impacts. It is estimated that around 100 million sharks are killed in commercial fisheries every year.

To help sharks, Shedd’s field scientists are conducting research in the Caribbean. By monitoring shark populations and patterns, we can better understand the impact of sanctuaries—and work with partners like the Bahamas National Trust to build better plans to protect sharks.

“The global threats to shark populations are far from over, but together we can keep the needle pointing in the right direction and help to safeguard shark populations long into the future. ”

Steve Kessel, director of marine research

What’s it like to swim with sharks in Shedd Aquarium’s Wild Reef? Find out with this underwater 360 video!

Sharks swim underwater in the Caribbean.

Keep Sharks Swimming

Dive in with sharks! Our exclusive 360 videos let you come face to face with sharks at Shedd Aquarium and in the crystal-blue waters of the Bahamas.

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Sharks from around the World

From reef sharks in constant motion to small deep-ocean sharks resting vertically on a rock wall, meet the sharks that call Shedd Aquarium home.

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Leopard Shark

Japanese Wobbegong

Swell Shark

Whitespotted Bamboo Shark

Horn Shark