Shark in Papua New Guinea Uses Its Fins to Walk on Land

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Sharks
Courtesy of City and Color (Flickr CC0)

People were treated to a surprising video preceding Shark Week 2022, during which Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson is the master of ceremonies.

In the video, Galante faces an epaulette shark using its fins to walk in the Papua New Guinea wetland. According to Galante, the footage is exciting because it shows a fish doing something previously seen only in other species. Several epaulette species were reported walking out of the water in remote tidal pools and reefs, but none in Papua New Guinea.

On July 27 at 8:00 p.m. ET/PT, Discovery and Discovery+ will premiere “Island of the Walking Sharks,” a documentary examining the lives of biologist and wildlife conservationist Forrest Galante and his investigation to discover if epaulette or bamboo sharks have evolved to walk on land.

He added that epaulettes developed the ability to briefly walk on land by using their fins to navigate the sea floor.

Epaulette sharks typically inhabit coral reefs hunting for crustaceans, worms, and small fish. Individuals are sometimes captured in tidal pools and shallow water pockets as the tide fall. By walking on exposed coral reefs and rock with their fins, they have evolved the ability ‘to walk.’

Sharks evolved around 9 million years ago to walk on land, making them the ‘youngest’ on earth. Because they tend to be trapped in tide pools with low oxygen levels, blood is directed to the brain to increase its supply, shutting down nonessential brain functions,

Sharks
Courtesy of wombatarama (Flickr CC0)

Galante hopes that the discoveries on the “Island of the Walking Sharks” will inspire animal lovers to support conservation and research.

On July 24, Shark Week previewed over 25 hours of new pictures and clips, including walking sharks, massive breaches, and many more documented finds.

The Air Jaws 14th installment is one of Shark Week’s most-watched programs.

Look at incidents like these to better understand the reasons behind shark attacks and what actions to take to avoid them.

Written by Janet Grace Ortigas
Edited by Cathy Milne-Ware

Sources:

People: Footage of a Shark in Papua New Guinea Walking on Land — Watch; by Kelli Bender
Yahoo! Entertainment: Shark Week 2022 to Include Footage of a Shark in Papua New Guinea Walking on Land — Watch; by Kelli Bender
ScreenRant: 10 Upcoming Shark Week Shows Plus When & Where To Watch Them; by Edward Banes

Featured and Top Image Courtesy of City.and.Color’s Flickr Page – Creative Commons License
Inset Image Courtesy of wombatarama‘s Flickr Page – Creative Commons License

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