Is there really a walking shark? Scientists believe that the new species of shark has been caught on video, according to an Aug. 30 Yahoo News report. The unusual shark actually uses its pectoral and dorsal fins to walk along the ocean floor, which is amazing.
In the walking shark video, you can see the 27-inch shark actually touching the ocean floor as it moves around in a walking like gaite. The shark can also swim, but it often walks. The good news about this new species is that they are harmless to humans, so do not expect to hear of walking shark attacks anytime soon.
The newly discovered species is called Hemiscyllium halmahera, which is after the Indonesian island of Halmahera. Researchers discovered the unique walking shark in a reef off that island. Indonesia is home to many of this type of shark, and the country has recently began an initiative to protect the sharks in the region. Many in the genus of walking sharks are found only in Indonesia, and they do not cross ocean waters into other regions, so if they are not protected, they could very well disappear completely.
Interestingly, the protection for the sharks comes more for economic benefit rather than simply wanting to save the genus and species in the region. Apparently a living shark is worth more to the Indonesian economy than a dead shark.