goblin shark

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English[edit]

a goblin shark in a museum
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Etymology[edit]

A calque of Japanese テングザメ (tenguzame), from 天狗 (てんぐ, tengu, a mythical creature with a long nose) + (サメ, same, shark).

Noun[edit]

goblin shark (plural goblin sharks)

  1. A species of mackerel shark, Mitsukurina owstoni, that has a long snout-like protrusion from its forehead and grows to 3.8 meters in length.
    • 2001, Leonard J. V. Compagno, Sharks of the World: An Annotated and Illustrated Catalogue of Shark Species , page 70,
      The long flexible caudal fin, without a ventral lobe, the soft, flabby body, and small, soft paired and unpaired fins, suggest that the goblin shark is a relatively inactive, slow swimming species with a density close to seawater.
    • 2007, Kimm Bellotto, Katie Kubesh, Niki McNeil, Sharks, page 8,
      Humans rarely see the goblin shark and we do not have a lot of information about them. Goblin sharks have a long, flat, pointy snout and their jaws protrude when they are eating. This makes the goblin shark look very unusual.
    • 2011, Ellen Prager, Sex, Drugs, and Sea Slime: The Oceans' Oddest Creatures and Why They Matter, page 102,
      From the few goblin sharks that have been caught and studied, scientists believe them to be ambush predators that sit and wait for prey such as small midwater fishes, crustaceans, and squids.

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