The Safina Center

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December, 2013

Dec 30th
2013

Some Sharks Give Birth Where Their Moms Did

Since the early 1990’s, biologist Samuel Gruber and his colleagues have suspected that some coastal shark species may return to their birthplace to breed – a behavior termed “natal philopatry”.  They suspected this because they had observed some sharks making seasonal migrations to discrete coastal areas to give birth. In particular, in the Bimini Islands, Bahamas, there were strong clues that lemon sharks there returned to their birthplace to breed. They noticed the same female lemon sharks returning to Bimini over and over to give birth. And they noticed that young lemon sharks in Bimini remain in the same nursery area they were born in until about age 3.

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