Talk:Great white shark

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Good article Great white shark has been listed as one of the Natural sciences good articles under the good article criteria. If you can improve it further, please do so. If it no longer meets these criteria, you can reassess it.
September 2, 2012 Good article nominee Listed
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Breaching behaviour details inaccurate[edit]

The section on Breacing Behaviour cites Chris Fallows as the person to first document breaching behaviour in False Bay. It is widely known that Rob Lawrence was also on this historic trip and they were both partners in the use of decoy towing to encourage breaching in False Bay. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Ricardoeliaslacombe (talkcontribs) 12:02, 24 March 2012 (UTC)

Thanks, updated the page accordingly. --Stefan talk 07:20, 18 April 2012 (UTC)

Edit request Add to information about the great white harvested on August 31,2011[edit]

He was released on October 25, off the coast of Santa Barbara by the aquarium's animal care staff. Based on the shark's behavior and condition prior to release, the Aquarium's white shark team had every confidence that he would do well back in the wild, and that the release would be a success. He appeared to be doing well before the release team lost sight of him as he swam away. However, according to data from an electronic tracking tag, he died soon afterward.

From the Monterrey bay aquarium website.

Candyxvi (talk) 07:58, 27 May 2012 (UTC)

Edit request on 12 July 2012[edit]

Update information accordingly with what reported in the information source.

      • OLD***

Since the year 2000 there have been a total of 66 unprovoked great white shark attacks, with 14 of these attacks being fatal.

      • NEW***

Since the year 1990 there have been a total of 139 unprovoked great white shark attacks, with 29 of these attacks being fatal. (talk) 05:15, 12 July 2012 (UTC)

Done (and simplified the wording a bit). Rivertorch (talk) 09:25, 12 July 2012 (UTC)

GA Review[edit]

This review is transcluded from Talk:Great white shark/GA1. The edit link for this section can be used to add comments to the review.

Reviewer: Sainsf (talk · contribs) 13:20, 27 August 2012 (UTC) Hi! I shall review this. I am leaving some preliminary comments, may have more also. I go section-wise, it is convenient.


  • A common word like 'ocean' need not be linked. Special terms ought to be linked (for example 'maturity', good you linked it).  Done
  • There need not be much referencing in the lead section, unless the facts are not to be discussed anywhere in the rest of the article.  Not done
  • I think you should write 'sexual maturity' and not just 'maturity'. It can have various meanings.  Not done it links to sexual maturity
  • ' It is the only known surviving species of its genus; Carcharodon' No need of semicolon after 'genus'.  Done
  • 'The IUCN treats the great white shark as a vulnerable' Better rewrite it as 'The IUCN lists the great white shark as a vulnerable species'.  Done
  • I found the IUCN link (footnote 2) is dead. It must be removed.  Done - Fixed!
  • I think this needs some clarification - 'It is the only known ... and is ranked first in having the most attacks on humans' implies humans are prey of this shark, while 'In reality, humans are not the preferred prey of the great white shark' contradicts the statement. Perhaps (if I think right) you could write 'and is ranked first in having the most attacks on humans, though it does not intend to prey on them'. I think this statement should be in the last paragraph of the lead, and 'In reality ... great white shark' can be omitted if you write as I have suggested.  Not done humans may be prey as they may be rouge sharks. But still it is ranked first but it doesn't imply that.

Overall : This part looks fine, no more comments!

Etymology Taxonomy[edit]

  • I suggest you make a new section 'Taxonomy and evolution', and put information about who first described the species, when and the genus, family and so on of the species. You can make another paragraph and use the information in 'Ancestry and fossil record'.  Not done Taxonomy and evolution is etymology.
OK, but I suggest at least rename the section as 'Taxonomy', it would look proper, with the fossil records along too. For one thing fossil records do not have much to do with etymology, do they?  Done - changed to taxonomy
  • I think you should use any one picture of fossils, else the text gets squashed.  Done
  • In the last line of 'Ancestry and fossil record', there is no reference. If it is footnote 11, add it at the end. And the footnote 11 need not be repeated everywhere. It can be written just once after the text, which implies all that text is based on this source.  Done


Distribution and habitat[edit]

  • 'After they arrive,...for up to 10 minutes' Write 10 as ten, numbers till ten (including it) should be written in words according to MoS. But these does not include numbers in which convert template is used, or decimals (of course!)  Done
Missed one more, corrected!

Overall:This section is done!

Anatomy and appearance[edit]

  • The introduction is unreferenced.  Done
  • In 'size', the metric units are linked. This is not required at all.  Done
  • 'ichthyological' should be linked (to icthyology').  Done
  • I think this section is too long, could you make it smaller, with necessary details? The records and observations seem to be consuming too much space.  Not done it is fine.
  • Who is J. E. Randall?  Not done - it is a quote.
Fine, but good if you can identify him.
  • Anatomy and appearance of the animal seems to have nothing to do with its adaptations and bite. So why have it in this section? Adaptations could be another section and bite force as a part of behavior.  Not done - Bite force is an adaptation, and adaptations are apart of anatomy.
  • In the Section Adaptation there is an incorrect calculation of temperature, 14 C is incorrectly labeled as 25 F, instead of the 57.2 F, that 14 C actually is. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 19:59, 10 October 2014 (UTC)

Overall:This too, pass!

Ecology and behavior[edit]

  • You can make Ecology and behavior on section, and add the thing about bite force in the previous section, Natural threats and Breaching behavior a part of this. Diet and Reproduction can be independent sections. Many articles do this.  Not done - per above.
  • If the introductory part is wholly based on footnote 32, cite at the end of each paragraph. That is proper.  Done
  • I see 'Diet' needs linking, so do not delete links here. But remove the one for 'carnivorous'.  Not done explain.
Seems too common a word. And also fish.
Took away fish but not carnivorous since not that many people know what it means. ObtundTalk 01:18, 2 September 2012 (UTC)
  • Once again, as per MoS, write numbers from one to ten in words.  Done
  • In 'Reproduction', the part about sexual maturity should be before the part about gestation and birth.  Done
I rewrote the first line. Now it looks fine!
  • In 'Natural threats' convert 500 m to ft.  Done

Overall : OK, Pass, now!

Relationship with humans[edit]

  • In 'Shark attacks', who is John McCosker? Same with Tricas. Remember, the people must be identified to the reader.  Done
  • In 'Attacks on boats', write 5 in words.  Done
  • In 'Great white sharks in captivity', no need of comma after August.  Done
  • In 'Shark tourism', 'Cage diving is most common off the coasts of South Australia, South Africa, and Guadalupe Island which is off the coast of Baja, California, where great whites are frequent their' is incorrect. It can be rewritten as 'Cage diving is most common off the coasts of South Australia, South Africa, and Guadalupe Island (which is off the coast of Baja, California, where great whites are frequent).'  Done
  • 'Conservation status' could be made into a new section, and the material from 'natural threats' can be used to describe the dangers to the species' population.  Done

Overall:Also a pass!

Rest parts[edit]

  • In footnotes, many references are not properly written with cite templates.  Done
  • External links uses too many links. But I may not be right, at the same time.  Not done - I agree with you but is there a rule saying that there is a certain amount?
  • Could you tell me how you have classified the citations as references and footnotes?  Done - I have changed it to references and removed the other reference section because the sources were listed above.
  • Another comment- About the photo captions. Those which are not full sentences, just phrases, should not have full stops in the end. And those which are sentences, need full stops. Check the captions for this. And just a normal comment, look for disambig links using the tool in the toolbox on this page (up above, you will find it).  Done

That is all for now. Fix these problems and reply here. If you wish to contact me, you can write here or on my talk page.--Sainsf <^>Talk all words 13:20, 27 August 2012 (UTC)

Yes check.svg Done ObtundTalk 12:46, 31 August 2012 (UTC)
Seen your talkback. I have summed up the comments on the sections, if they are pass or not. One or two are left, resolve them, then the article is well and truly done. Cheers! --Sainsf <^>Talk all words 15:27, 31 August 2012 (UTC)

On the refs[edit]

I have rewrote many more references.

  • I think ref 29 ( is not such a reliable source. It does not even properly mention its own source. Better remove it.  Done

Once done with this, I shall make this a GA!--Sainsf <^>Talk all words 12:10, 1 September 2012 (UTC)

Yes check.svg Done ObtundTalk 01:15, 2 September 2012 (UTC)

Good work! So now, for the final evaluation:

  1. Is it reasonably well written?
    a. prose: clear and concise, respects copyright laws, correct spelling and grammar:
    b. complies with MoS for lead, layout, words to watch, fiction, and list incorporation:
  2. Is it factually accurate and verifiable?
    a. provides references to all sources in the section(s) dedicated to footnotes/citations according to the guide to layout:
    b. provides in-line citations from reliable sources where necessary:
    c. no original research:
  3. Is it broad in its coverage?
    a. it addresses the main aspects of the topic:
    b. it remains focused and does not go into unnecessary detail (see summary style):
  4. Does it follow the neutral point of view policy.
    fair representation without bias:
  5. Is it stable?
    no edit wars, etc:
  6. Does it contain images to illustrate the topic?
    a. images are copyright tagged, and non-free images have fair use rationales:
    Great life-like images, good! Even a video to satisfy the reader!
    b. images are provided where possible and appropriate, with suitable captions:
  7. Overall:
    Pass or Fail:
    Great article; it had to be a GA!

Cheers! --Sainsf <^>Talk all words 09:39, 2 September 2012 (UTC)

Incorrect Date for Great White Shark Caught Off Coast of Prince Edward Island[edit]

The year quoted in the article is 1988 but the correct year is 1983., actually quotes two years in their article the first, and correct one, being 1983 and the second as 1988. Other sources:

All of the above sources cite 1983 as the correct year.Optimus past my Prime (talk) 21:31, 31 August 2012 (UTC)

But the sharks these sources tell about seem to be different from this shark. You can not be sure.--Sainsf <^>Talk all words 09:58, 2 September 2012 (UTC)


The last sentence is a complete non sequitor, Jaws never makes the argument or even really insinuates that humans are the preferred prey of great whites. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 18:38, 19 December 2012 (UTC)

No, but it does insinuate that Great Whites actively hunt humans. douts (talk) 20:30, 19 December 2012 (UTC)

The cited source does not support the premise that Great Whites never actively hunt humans. In fact, it mentions 108 times that Great Whites attacked humans on the Pacific coast of the United States. No where in Jaws is it suggested that this is an ordinary Great White displaying typical behavior. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 17:09, 5 February 2013 (UTC)

The issue with Jaws is that anyone with only basic general knowledge about great whites could be misled into believing that they actively hunt humans. In fact the film is one of the main reasons for the stigma around sharks in general which marine scientists are still trying to rectify. So the sentence about Jaws should defo stay in the article. douts (talk) 19:32, 5 February 2013 (UTC)

That would be fine if it was changed to say 'in reality, Great Whites have attacked humans 108 times on the Pacific coast of the United States' so that it actually reflects the cited source. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 15:35, 5 March 2013 (UTC)

adding new white shark policy from Australia[edit]

Good morning,

I thought it might be useful for the latest Australian Government White Shark recovery plan to be included in the conservation section

Old: Australia's population of great whites was revealed in a study published on July 7, 2012 was revealed to be two separate populations separated by the Bass Strait into eastern and western populations, and may require regional protection. [86]

New: Australia's population of great whites was revealed in a study published on July 7, 2012 was revealed to be two separate populations separated by the Bass Strait into eastern and western populations, and may require regional protection. [86] In 2013, the Australian government made a new Recovery Plan for the White Shark ( Carcharodon carcharias). The plan considers the conservation requirements of the species across its Australian range and identifies the actions to be taken to ensure the species' long-term viability in nature and the parties that will undertake those actions. This is a revision of the 2002 White Shark (Carcharodon carcharias) Recovery Plan (EA, 2002) and should be read in conjunction with the 2013 Issues Paper for the White Shark (Carcharodon carcharias)(DSEWPaC, 2013). — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 00:41, 16 August 2013 (UTC)

Done (I omitted the provided text as it was copied verbatim from the government website, but expanded on the suggestion to create an entire section on Australian great white shark conservation status.) Librarywild (talk) 20:35, 21 August 2013 (UTC)

No natural predators[edit]

Its known that Orcas prey on White Pointers. I believe this needs to be addressed. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 07:20, 23 November 2013 (UTC)

Can you provide a reliable source for this information so that it can be incorporated into the article. Thanks XFEM Skier (talk) 07:42, 23 November 2013 (UTC)

583118755 (linked seemingly contradictory statements)[edit]

Erm, why would you link them, they were separate sentences and didn't contradict, it's perfectly possible for the shark most responsible for unprovoked attacks on humans to also not have humans as one of its preferred prey species, your edit has made them sound contradictory. If you just drop the and, you're probably ok, "shark,and of all shark species, the great white", or you can just revert. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 18:52, 24 November 2013 (UTC)


it should be "swam" here:

...a great white with a satellite tag was found to have immediately submerged to a depth of 500 m (1,600 ft) and swam to Hawaii.[59]  — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 22:44, 1 January 2014 (UTC) 

Opinion/Soapbox under "Reproduction"[edit]

The section on "Reproduction" closes with the following statement:

"If the Sea of Cortez is such a breeding ground, it is imperative that the area's laws be better enforced to ensure the survival of the breeding population."

This seems to me like opinion or advocacy (WP:NOTSOAPBOX). Would a more experienced editor care to comment? JeffBuckles (talk) 03:25, 7 January 2014 (UTC)

I agree. This sentence should be removed.


Please update article to include new research on lifespan, Great Whites can live to 70 years old. Source: (talk) 12:08, 10 January 2014 (UTC)

Thanks. (talk) 12:08, 10 January 2014 (UTC)

Citation needed in Conservation Status[edit]

The last paragraph under the Conservation Status heading seems suspect or superfluous without any citations.

"Fishermen target many sharks for their jaws, teeth, and fins, and as game fish in general. The great white shark, however, is rarely an object of commercial fishing, although its flesh is considered valuable. If casually captured (it happens for example in some tonnare in the Mediterranean), it is misleadingly sold as smooth-hound shark."

Who considers it valuable? What is the source that says it is sold as smooth-hound, or that it is rarely an object of commercial fishing?

Babymustard (talk) 16:34, 14 April 2014 (UTC)

Great white shark population[edit]

In a recent study in California, it has been found that there are over 2,400 white sharks off the coast of california, instead of the 2013 findings that there were only 340 sharks. Someone should edit the article to reflect the new findings as soon as possible.

Can you provide a link to this study?XFEM Skier (talk) 07:04, 28 June 2014 (UTC)

Here is the offical study:

Additional link to National Geographic.

-- (talk) 23:18, 26 November 2014 (UTC)

Request to edit the following sentence[edit]

The great white shark is an apex predator of the seas and has no natural predators other than the Orca.[10]

While this sentence is quoting a book, the author clearly does not have an understanding of what the words "APEX PREDATOR" means as the author has contradicted the term "APEX PREDATOR" in the very sentence that he used the term.

Apex Predator = A predator with no natural predators.

The same sentence indicates that the Orca is in fact a natural predator of the Great White, thus excluding the Great White from the classification of "Apex Predator"

I suggest that the sentence be read worded to not copy the book author and instead say something like. "The great white shark is a top predator of the oceans who's only natural predator is the Orca." — Preceding unsigned comment added by Tws101 (talkcontribs) 02:21, 10 July 2014 (UTC)

Good point, correction made. JoelWhy?(talk) 14:23, 4 August 2014 (UTC)

The shark that was killed by orca in Farallon Islands in 1997 was an subadult only 10~13 feet long([1]). It should be noted that fish are animals that grow throughout their lifetime,and even between the adult great white sharks,the size differences can be astronomical. The average great white shark is around 15 feet long,which is far larger than the 10-foot shark eaten by killer whale. Some large free-swimming great white sharks are around 500~580cm(16.5~19 feet)([2]), and they are not uncommon.

The type of orca that eats sharks,on the other hand,is offshore killer whale,which are smaller than other killer whales in size,with less sexual dimorphism ([3]). The group of orcas that ate the white shark in 1997 weren't offshore killer whale,but they,too,were very small in size compared to other types of killer whales. (The female that attacked the shark in 1997 was 4.7~5.2m in length) ([4]

There are no records of great white sharks larger than its average size eaten by killer whales,and since large great whites attain sizes close to killer whales that eats sharks,the attacks are very unlikely. Also,as mentioned before,the shark that was killed by killer whale is one of the smallest adults,way behind the average size. My point is that great white sharks should not be excluded from the classification "apex predator,"and the sentence "The great white shark has no natural predators other than the orca." should be changed to,"Great white sharks have no natural predators,though small adults can fall prey to killer whales." It should be more specific. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Csw0219 (talkcontribs) 00:52, 22 January 2015 (UTC)

Conservation status[edit]

The Great White Shark has long been fully protected in South African waters, and the fishing ban is generally obeyed.CRJ Taylor (talk) 10:49, 4 August 2014 (UTC)

Semi-protected edit request on 12 August 2014[edit]

Remove,"The great white shark has no natural predators other than the Orca." because this sentence could be a contradiction, "has no natural predator", then names a predator, "Orca"

Replace with, "The only great white shark natural predator is the Orca." Charliewoolery (talk) 14:12, 12 August 2014 (UTC)charliewoolery

It's not a contradiction; grammatically, it's fine as-is. But, if you'd like to change it, you could have it read "The only natural predator of the great white shark is the Orca." JoelWhy?(talk)

Age of Maturity[edit]

The introduction contains conflicting information on age of sexual maturity that should be resolved one way or the other. Looking at the source referenced for each fact, numbers 64 and 9, it seems to me that number 9 is superior though I would reference the source material for the article rather than the article itself. Here are the edits I propose, I would make it myself but cannot due to my unconfirmed status:


"This shark reaches its maturity around 15 years of age and was previously believed to have a life span of over 30 years. The true lifespan of great white sharks is far longer; now estimated to be as long as 70 years or more, making it one of the longest lived cartilaginous fish currently known."


"This shark was previously believed to have a life span of approximately 30 years, but its true lifespan is now thought to be far longer at 70 years or more, which would make it one of the longest lived cartilaginous fish currently known."

I would remove references 8 and 9 from the introduction in accordance with the wishes of a previous editor since these references appear later in the article.

Ecology and behavior: Reproduction

"Great white sharks also reach sexual maturity at around 15 years of age."


"Great white sharks are currently believed to reach sexual maturity at ages 26 and 33 years for male and female sharks respectively." Reference here:

I do not understand why the subject of lifespan is included under reproduction, but I will leave that to a more experienced editor to decide. I would make this minor edit regardless of where it should be:

"the true lifespan of the great white shark was revealed to be up to 70 years or more,"


"the true lifespan of the great white shark was revealed to be 70 years or more,"

Bemis Ampleforth (talk) 13:57, 10 March 2015 (UTC) (talk)Ubiquitousnewt204.47.172.84 (talk) 17:00, 19 May 2015 (UTC) "33 years"? Nonsense. No way do these things reach sexual reproduction as late as this article claims. The citations provided are bad; 2 are "science-o-tainment" sites, and the last isn't relevant and doesn't support the text. "Individuals of this species mature late (females 14-16 years; males 9-10 years), and have few offspring (Cailliet et al. 1985; Francis 1996). Females breed every two to three years (Francis 1996; Compagno et al. 1997; Domeier 2012a). Although parturition (live birth) has never been observed, it is believed to occur in or near the warm waters of the SCB and northern Mexico in the late spring and summer."

Somebody fix it

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