The Ultimate Nurse Shark Quiz

By: HowStuffWorks.com Contributors

The Ultimate Nurse Shark Quiz
Image: iStockphoto.com/Ron Masessa

About This Quiz

Nurse sharks are the laziest of sharks. Because they do not have to move to breathe, they are quite sedentary. Take this quiz to learn more about the nurse shark.
Which fin makes up more than 25 percent of the nurse shark's length?
dorsal
caudal
Nurse sharks have a very long caudal fin, making up more than 25 percent of its length.
pectoral

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What does the nurse shark use to suck in food?
pharynx
The nurse shark uses its pharynx, which is a muscular cavity, to suck in its prey.
barbels
large mouth

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What type of teeth does the nurse shark have?
small
non-serrated
both answers
The nurse shark has small and non-serrated teeth.

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If nurse sharks do not have razor sharp teeth, why are they a danger to humans?
very strong bite
Although they do not have the same bite as sharks with razor sharp teeth, the nurse shark has an incredibly strong and damaging bite.
cutting bite
tearing bite

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How does the nurse shark sense its prey?
barbels
The nurse shark uses its barbels to smell the scent of its next meal.
protruding eyes
exceptional hearing

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What physical trait allows the nurse shark to be rather sedentary?
must move to breathe
breathe without moving
both answers
Some sharks have ram-jet ventilation and must move to breathe. Nurse sharks have a respiratory system that pumps water over their gills so they can to breathe without moving.

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When do nurse sharks hunt for food?
day
night
Nurse sharks mostly hunt for food at night.
both answers

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What do nurse sharks do during the daylight hours?
hunt
rest
both answers
They rest during the day.

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Where is a fun and safe place to observe a nurse shark?
New England Aquarium
Nurse sharks may be viewed on display in aquariums such as the New England Aquarium in Boston, Massachusetts. When captured they are easy to care for and quite hardy.
Caribbean Sea
Gulf of Mexico

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How do nurse sharks encourage genetic diversity?
fertilization by more than on male nurse shark
A litter of pups may be fertilized by more than one male nurse shark.
mate with other species of shark
neither answer

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How does the male shark get a female to mate?
bites her pectoral fin
holds her in place
both answers
The male shark bites the female's pectoral fin and holds her in place.

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What is the length of shark pups at birth?
six inches
one foot
The babies are born already one foot long.
two feet

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How long is the pregnancy of a nurse shark?
six months
nine months
The nurse shark is pregnant for six months.
eleven months

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If nurse sharks are meat eaters, why have corral and algae been found in their stomachs?
unintentionally
Nurse sharks suck up their prey, and sometimes they suck up corral and algae unintentionally.
like crunchy corral
algae is nutritious

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When do nurse sharks attack humans?
only when provoked
Usually nurse sharks will attack humans only when provoked -- like when stepped upon in shallow water. Their bite is exceptionally strong, and surgery or special equipment has been needed to release the shark's bite.
to protect their pups
when hungry

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You Got:
/15
iStockphoto.com/Ron Masessa

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