A rare find led to one of the most frightening discoveries on the Internet in recent memory. The science community welcomed the first live fossil being captured off the 80 million-year-old frilled shark. While this shark was not 80 million years old, it comes from one of the oldest shark families in the history of Earth. A fisherman caught the frilled shark off the coast of Australia near the entrance of a lake into the Gippsand region. When looking at the creature, it’s hard to believe that it’s even real in the first place. It does look like something out of a movie, but typically thrives at pretty far depths.
Simon Boag of the South East Trawl Fishing Association pointed out that this was the first one that he had ever seen in his life, and that it was likely the first shark of its kind to be found in recent years. “We couldn’t find a fisherman who had ever seen one before,” he said. Boag went on to point out that “It does look 80 million years old. It looks prehistoric, it looks like it’s from another time!”
At that point, the CSIRO did actually confirm that the shark was, in fact, a frilled shark and that it was a very rare find. It features 300 teeth, which run over 25 rows. Boag said, “once you’re in that mouth, you’re not coming out.” They feature six pairs of gills across their body that give them their “frilled” look, and that is ultimately how scientists have classified them to this point. Now though, this gives researchers and scientists an opportunity to begin looking into the animal to see what it could possibly yield.
The pointed out that the creature operates like a snake does. It can move its body around like a snake does, and hunts prey, in the same way. However, its teeth are needle-like, and often are prepared to battle in some of the most extreme conditions. That being said, it isn’t believed that there are a ton of these animals living in the world’s oceans today so it remains to be seen what information can be yielded from this discovery. It’s unclear how they have evolved throughout their long history, and where they stand in the global scale when it comes to shark in terms of pure numbers.