Carcharhinus leucas   (Valenciennes, in Muller & Henle,  1839) (Fish)
Organism information awaits expert curation
Class: Elasmobranchii

Image copyrights: Randall, J.E.

Size: Max length 350 cm TL; common length 260 cm TL

Max. weight reported: 316.5 kg

Color: Grayish above, white below; fins with dark tips, especially in young individuals.

Snout small, blunt and broadly rounded. Small eyes and triangular saw-edged upper teeth and lack of interdorsal ridge are distinguishing features. 1st dorsal fin broad and triangular and less than 3.2 times height of 2nd dorsal fin; no interdorsal ridge. Lobial furrows are short and inconspicuous. Pectoral fin is large and angular. Inter dorsal ridge is absent.

Dioecious, internal (oviduct) fertilization, internal live bearers. Viviparpous, with a yolk-sac placenta, 1-13 young in a litter. Size at birth about 60 cm TL. Estimated gestation period is 10 to 11 months. Distinct pairing with embrace. Sexual maturity is attained after 10-15 years (at a length between 160-200 centimeters).

Max. age reported: 32 years

Capable of covering great distances (up to 180 kilometers in 24 hours).

Synonym (s)
Carcharias leucas Muller & Henle, 1839
(Senior synonym)
Carcharias spenceri Ogilby, 1910
(Junior synonym)
Carcharhinus zambezensis (Peters, 1852)
(Junior synonym)
Carcharhinus amboinensis (non Muller & Henle, 1839)
(Misapplied name)
Carcharhinus azureus (Gilbert & Starks, 1904)
(Junior synonym)
Carcharhinus nicaraguensis (Gill, 1877)
(Junior synonym)
Carcharhinus vanrooyeni Smith, 1958
(Junior synonym)
Carcharias azureus Gilbert & Starks, 1904
(Junior synonym)
Carcharias brachyurus (non Gunther, 1870)
(Misapplied name)
Carcharias zambezensis Peters, 1852
(Junior synonym)
Eulamia nicaraguensis Gill, 1877
(Junior synonym)
Galeolamna bogimba Whitley, 1943
(Junior synonym)
Galeolamna greyi mckaili Whitley, 1945
(Junior synonym)
Galeolamna leucas (Muller & Henle, 1839)
(Senior synonym)
Galeolamna mckaili Whitley, 1945
(Junior synonym)
Galeolamna stevensi (non Ogilby, 1911)
(Misapplied name)
Prionodon platyodon Poey, 1860
(Junior synonym)
Squalus obtusus Poey, 1861
(Junior synonym)
Squalus platyodon (Poey, 1860)
(Junior synonym)

Common Name (s)
• Bull Shark (English)
• Magar
Economic Importance and Threats
Importance:  Commercial, Dangers
(Fisheries, gamefish, aquarium. Utilized fresh, fresh-frozen or smoked for human consumption, fins for soup, hide for leather, liver for oil, and carcass for fishmeal. Traumatogenic)

Habitat:  Reef Associated, Estuarine, Coastal
Trophic Level:  Tertiary Consumer
Prey:  Bony fishes, other sharks, rays, mantis shrimps, crabs, squid, sea snails, sea urchins, mammalian carrion, sea turtles.
Predator:  Crocodylus niloticus
IUCN Status:  NearThreatened


• East Coast INDIA
• Orissa, Chilika INDIA
• West Bengal (Lat: 21.45) (Long: 87.9) INDIA

Literature Source(s)
  • Satapathy, D and Panda, S (2009) Fish atlas of Chilika Chilika Development Authority, Bhubaneswar 74 pp Available at - NIO, Goa
  • Froese, R and Pauly, D (2000) Fishbase 2000: Concepts, design and data sources ICLARM 344 pp Available at -
  • Society for the Management of European Biodiversity Data (2009) World Register of Marine Species (WoRMS) Available at -
  • Fischer, W and Bianchi, G (Eds.) (1984) FAO species identification sheets for fishery purposes. Western Indian Ocean (Fishing Area 51) FAO, Rome 5 Available at -
  • Raje, SG; Sivakami, S; Mohanraj, G; Manoj Kumar, PP; Raju, A and Joshi, KK (2007) An atlas on the Elasmobranch fishery resources of India CMFRI Special publication CMFRI, Cochin, India. 95 253pp Available at -
  • (2003) IUCN Red list of threatened species Available at -
  • Pillai, PKM and Augustine, SK (2000) A code list of common marine living resources of the Indian seas CMFRI Special Publication No.12 CMFRI 1-115 Available at -
  • Das, P; De, SP; Bhowmik, RM; Pandit, IK; Sengupta, R; Nandi, AC; Thakurta, SC and Saha, S (2007) Piscine diversity of West Bengal Fishing chimes 27(5) 15-28 Available at - NIO, Goa

Page last updated on:2011-12-28

Back to Search