Say cheese! That’s what you might say if you plan to take an underwater selfie with the giant and awe-inspiring creature of the ocean world – the shark! It’s because after all they have very nice teeth that shine, their smiles make them very photogenic, isn’t it!
Would you like to take a selfie with the famous ocean celebrity? What! Not! Because? Oooopppsss…those shiny but razor sharp teeth… Got you! Have you ever wondered why sharks have so many teeth? Well, as you already know there are many different species of sharks that live in the ocean and seas, the number of teeth varies from species to species as it depends on the type of shark! Let’s bite the bullet and keep reading to learn more about shark teeth!
Some sharks can grow up to 50,000 teeth in their lifetime
Now we know what you’re thinking, «you just said that». Yes, but this one is crazy! No, they don’t have all those teeth at the same time. But, depending on the type of shark, they can have up to 300 teeth during different life stages. A shark tooth is not very strong and can easily fall out. Their teeth have no roots. Some sharks can lose their teeth in just a week. That’s why it’s so easy to find them on beaches. Unlike humans, sharks can easily replace their missing teeth with new ones. They may feel uncomfortable talking about a missing tooth, so they need to find a way to replace it as soon as possible.
On average, sharks have 15 rows of teeth in each jaw. Most only have about five. But the bull shark is no match for these. They have up to 50 rows of teeth with 7 teeth in each row. This averages about 350 teeth at a time. He’s a bull we don’t want to play with.
Can sharks regenerate teeth endlessly?
Sharks don’t depend on two sets of teeth: they have an inexhaustible supply of teeth, with dentition constantly regenerating throughout life.
Sharks continually lose their teeth and replace them through a tooth replacement system. Thanks to this system, sharks replace their teeth relatively quickly with ready-to-turn replacement teeth because their teeth are often damaged when catching prey.
How many teeth do sharks have at a time?
Many sharks have 5 to 15 rows of teeth in each jaw. One of the main reasons shark teeth break easily is because they don’t have roots to hold them in place. A tooth usually lasts about a week before falling out. When the tooth falls out, another tooth behind it comes up and replaces it. Replacement is done in as little as 24 hours. These fish continue to replace their teeth throughout their lives. As the shark grows, the new teeth become larger than the replaced ones.
Shark teeth exhibit a greater degree of variability, but are often well adapted to targeting specific prey. Some teeth are flattened; some are twisted while others are straight. Sharks that inhabit shallow waters where they typically feed on crustaceans such as shrimp, molluscs (with their hard shells) and lobsters are perfectly adaptable for crushing their prey. However, fish-eating species have rather sharper teeth which help them hold fish properly. Shark teeth are hardened so well that they last a long time.
How many teeth does a shark lose in its lifetime?
It is estimated that sharks lose 20 or more teeth per week, which means that sharks can lose several dozen teeth per month.