Huge, pregnant great white shark caught off NE Taiwan coast

Gargantuan great white shark carrying 14 baby sharks caught off NE Taiwan coast

(Image from PTT)

(Image from PTT)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) -- A huge great white shark measuring over 4 meters in length caught off the northeast coast of Taiwan Wednesday (March 20) was found to be carrying 14 baby sharks.

On Wednesday, a fisherman from Yilan caught a great white shark in Dong'ao Bay measuring 4.2 meters in length and weighing 1,170 kilograms, reported CNA. The fisherman sold the massive shark at an auction in the Nan-fang-ao Fishing Harbor in Su'ao Township, Yilan County for a price NT$58,500 (US$1,898) or NT$50 per kilogram.

Cheng Ming-hiou (鄭明修), a research fellow in the Biodiversity Research Center of Academia Sinica who has specialized in marine ecology for over 20 years, was cited by Liberty Times as saying that it was "the largest great white shark I have ever seen in my life."

After an incision was made in the shark's belly, a staggering 14 fully-formed baby sharks were found inside. Cheng said that before this find, the academic community was not very clear about the reproductive mode of the great white shark.

(Photo from Facebook user 陳三發)

Cheng said that after this find, it is clear that the great white shark is ovoviviparous, meaning that it produces eggs which are then hatched inside the mother.

The massive shark was purchased by Chen Chin- tsai (陳進財), an auctioneer in the fish market. The one-ton shark will be taken to the Taiwan Oceanic Artistic Museum where it will be preserved for public research and viewing, according to Liberty Times.

(Photo from Facebook user 陳三發)

Taiwanese netizens felt the capture and killing of the shark and its offspring was cruel:

"Fisherman knows they will be condemned for this, yet he still insists on catching it."

"Really very pitiful."

"When can we learn to respect marine culture?"

"I have seen baby sharks being taken out of their mother's bellies at Zhuwei Fishing Port before, and I wonder how they could be so cruel."

(Screenshot from Facebook)