It is one thing to read about a bull shark’s bizarre eating habits and an entirely different experience to witness a shark tearing its victim into pieces. 

A Florida fisherman and his guests were lucky enough – but terrified – to capture a bull shark during chow time. But, unfortunately, the bull shark lives to its expectation of not being a picky eater when it bites off the tail of another shark trapped by the fisherman’s hook. 

The footage concludes before the shark comes back to finish its victim off. But the blood from the shark likely caught the attention of many other sharks in the locality, increasing the likelihood of a feeding frenzy.  

What Attracted the Bull Shark to the Scene?

The bull shark attacked because it sensed that the fish was in distress. The smaller shark was caught up by the fisherman’s hook and made distressing movements as it tried to break free.

Its movements, unfortunately, attracted the bull shark, which would not pass an opportunity for an easy meal. 

Bull sharks are extremely sensitive to sound and can detect faint vibrations in waters up to 330 feet away. 

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The bull shark also likely used its powerful sense of smell to draw it to the trapped fish. It smells objects by processing and differentiating chemicals in the water. Sharks can detect a single particle in 25 million particles of seawater. 

Bull shark in Caribbean sea.
Bull sharks are extremely sensitive to sound and can detect faint vibrations in waters up to 330 feet away. 

Carlos Grillo/Shutterstock.com

A shark is extremely sensitive to scents produced by mates, prey, and predators. The smell from an injured or distressed prey typically warrants an immediate reaction. 

It gets worse for a bleeding victim because sharks within a third-mile radius will detect and come for a meal.

Sharks have another trick up their sleeves called electroreception that lets them know everything around them. 

The electroreceptors are found in tiny pores around the shark’s snout region. These cells enable the shark to generate a map of their soundings and detect electrical signals produced by objects and creatures around them. 

These electroreceptors are so sensitive that they can detect the heartbeat of fish hidden under the sand. The cells’ location at the shark’s head helps it to position its mouth near the prey before it launches an attack.

How Do Bull Sharks Hunt?

Bull sharks prefer to ambush their prey, so they hunt in murky waters where visibility is low. The prey will not see the bull shark coming, but the shark will rely on its other senses to pinpoint its meal. 

Once they have located the prey, the bull shark will charge and knock it head-on to reduce its chances of swimming away. Sometimes the bull shark will bump into and bite its prey until it is too exhausted to escape. An adult shark may have approximately 3,000 teeth arranged in five rows. The teeth allow the shark to hold the prey as they bite off chunks and swallow whole. Sharks don’t need to feed daily; they only need to eat once or twice a month.

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