How Big Is A Great White Shark? With Comparisons Images
Before we go too far and look at the larger examples of great white sharks, we should take a moment to consider the average. How big is a great white shark? If we average things out between male and female, young and old it will vary a bit? But with everything averaged out, a great white shark will typically be 15 feet long and can weigh up to 5,000 lbs. (4.572 meters. 2267.96 kg.)
Above image shows how big a great white shark is to a human.
But with that in mind, what’s the largest example of a great white shark that we’ve been able to observe in nature?
How Large Can A Great White Shark Grow?
The largest great white shark on record was a fairly recent discovery. Divers discovered the huge shark in 2019 near Oahu in Hawaii. The huge shark has since been nicknamed Deep Blue. The shark is estimated at around 50 years old.
Deep Blue is estimated to measures in at an immense 20 feet (6 meters) to 22 feet (6.7 meters) and weighs 5,000 lbs. This places its weight right on the heavy size for a great white shark. But Deep Blue is considerably longer than the average member of its species.
Amazingly enough, researchers had become aware of the shark when it was considerably younger. It was tagged off the coast of Mexico about two decades ago.
The shark’s size is even more amazing when we consider that it may well live, and continue to grow, for another twenty years.
Above image: It would take 15 great white sharks (At 20 feet each) to cover the length of a soccer field.
The Fearsome Kings and Queens of the Ocean.
The great white shark is the single largest predatory fish in the world. Killer whales have been known to attack great white sharks. However, this is a rare occurrence.
For the most part a great white shark fears nothing else in the water. Likewise, almost everything a great white shark encounters might become its meal.
What Do Great White Sharks Eat?
Some of the animals great white sharks prey upon include dolphins, whales, sea turtles, fish, seals, sea lions and even the occasional unlucky bird, like a seagull.
Great white sharks will sometimes even swallow inedible objects it can’t fully digest. If a great white shark sees something there’s a good chance it’ll attempt to eat it. This shark’s appetite is both legendary and terrifying. But just how is it using that food?
Above image, it would take 15 large great white sharks to cover the length of a soccer field.
What is Bigger, a Male or Female Great White Shark?
We need to begin by looking at the differences between male and female great white sharks. At first glance there doesn’t seem to be much difference between the two sexes. But in reality, the female great white sharks are significantly larger than a male.
There’s no strict rule over just how much larger a female great white shark will be than the males. But on average a female great white is about 20% or so larger than the males.
How Old Are Great White Sharks?
We also need to consider a great white shark’s age when trying to determine the species size. There’s a huge difference between the size of a human infant and her grandfather. But that’s nothing compared to what we see with great white sharks.
Humans typically stop growing in height when they’re about 15 or 16 years old or in some cases a bit older. A great white shark will also see his growth diminish when he reaches maturity at around 33 years old or so. However, a great white’s growth simply slows rather than stops after reaching maturity.
Great white sharks can theoretically live for about 73 years in the wild. This means that they can have 33 years of rapid growth. Following that the shark may well experience another 40 years of slower growth.
How Much Does a Baby Great White Shark Weigh?
So far we’ve looked at the average size of a great white shark and its largest known example. But what about the other side of things? Just how small are baby great white sharks? We don’t have nearly as many examples of baby great white sharks as adults. But one of the smallest known examples washed ashore on Ninety Mile Beach in 2019.
The tiny shark was only 3.4 feet long and weighed 17.1 lbs. That’s certainly quite small when compared to Deep Blue. But at the same time it’s remarkable to think that a baby great white shark still measures about half the height of an adult human.
How High Can A Great White Shark Jump?
It is estimated the great white shark can jump around 8 to 10 feet (Around 2.4 to 3 meters) or even higher. Wow, for their body weight that is very impressive! (An ostrich is around 9 feet tall and they are tall.)
A tallish man is around 6 feet high, so that puts it in perspective of just how the great white can jump. Basketball anyone?
Below is a look at the great white shark’s torpedo shape and powerful caudal fin that can propel them through the water at great speeds.
The Most Feared And Respected Sea Creature.
People have spoken of the sea with a sense of fearful respect ever since humanity’s earliest days.
Some of the oldest stories, such as the Epic of Gilgamesh or the Odyssey, show characters who earned great treasure by braving the ocean’s wrath. And of course sea monsters were a common element of ancient maps.
Our ancestor’s stories of monsters usually turn out to be little more than myth and exaggeration. But the oceans have proven to be an exception to that rule.
It’s an undersea world where we truly do run into floating giants like the blue whale. But one animal in particular can lay claim to the title of most fearsome sea creature and most respected. That animal is the great white shark.