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Put on ‘Baby Shark,’ There’s New Footage of a Newborn Great White

A new video may have captured the rare first moments of a newborn great white shark. Researchers say the footage is significant because it’s “nearly impossible to be in the exact right place” to capture video of a baby shark.

Carlos Gauna, an aerial photographer who often uses a drone, captured the video. 

Later, researchers with Environmental Biology of Fishes examined why the tiny animal was covered in a milky white film. 

“Upon close examination of video and photos, the individual’s pale color appears to be a thin white film covering the shark. We noted that as the shark was swimming, the whitish film was being sloughed off,” wrote researchers. “We propose two possibilities for this shark’s interesting pale color: the whitish film is leftover intrauterine substances being sloughed off the shark due to it being a newborn shark, or the whitish film is due to an unknown skin disorder.”

Researching Great White Sharks

Researchers say one of the mysteries of great white sharks is where they give birth. The new find now gives increased attention to Southern California, as the video came from the Santa Barbara area. 

Researchers also say the shark’s size measured around one and a half meters, which is over four feet. However, while that may seem large, great whites can grow up to 20 feet long. The size is consistent with a baby shark.

Plus, photographer Gauna captured images of adult great whites in the area leading up to the tiny shark. This increases the likelihood this animal was recently born.

baby shark video
Other great white sharks in the area. (Source: Carlos Gauna)

While finding a newborn white shark is an exciting breakthrough for biologists, the alternative of a skin condition would bring more questions. If that is the correct answer, researchers say there is currently no explanation for what would create the milky coloration. They also question why the white substance would be coming off of the shark.

See more of Carlos Gauna’s work in a previous interview with Outdoors.com.

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