- Huge caudal fin upper lobe, nearly equal to length of body
- White patches extending from abdomen above pectoral fin bases
- No interdorsal ridge
Similar Species: Bigeye thresher shark, A. superciliosus (has larger eyes and V-groove on top of head)
Maximum size about 20 feet in length and a maximum recorded weight of 750 pounds. Matures at approximately 7-9 years of age (about 10-15 feet) and is estimated to live 28+ years.
Adults are observed offshore and in oceanic waters, sometimes wandering close to coastal areas in search of food. Juveniles inhabit coastal bays and nearshore areas.
Feeds on a variety of schooling fishes such as menhaden, herring, bluefish, and mackerel. Also feed on bonito, squid, and sea birds. Known to hunt in groups and/or pairs, using their large tails to herd and stun their prey.
Gives birth to live young after approximately 9 months of gestation. Embryos known to consume other embryos within the uterus (known as oophagy) but are not cannibalistic. Broods contain 2-7 pups. Size at birth about 4-5 feet.
Considered harmless to humans, this is a shy species and difficult to approach. Valuable commercial species with marketable flesh, hide, fins, and liver. A popular game fish species, often hooked on the upper lobe of their tail as they try to stun the live bait with their tail.
Image Credit: © Diane Rome Peebles