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How Many Teeth Do Great White Sharks Have?

Great white sharks are among the most well-known sharks on the planet. They can be found in almost all of the world’s oceans, particularly along the coasts of California, South Africa, South Australia, Japan, and the Mediterranean Sea.

These marine animals are carnivorous and are known for feeding on any animal that comes their way, which may cause some people to wonder how many teeth do great white sharks have and how they can feed on so many different types of animals. This article will provide answers to your questions.

Key takeaways:

  • Great white sharks have 300 teeth used for killing and eating their prey.
  • Great white sharks are afraid of dolphins.
  • Frilled sharks, basking, bull shark, and whale shark are some of the sharks with many teeth in its mouth.

How many teeth do great white sharks have?

A great white shark
A great white shark

Great white sharks have approximately 300 serrated teeth arranged in several rows inside their mouth. They use these as a weapon for self-defense as well as for feeding and catching prey. Shark teeth are also constantly replaced as they wear down or break off, ensuring that these predators never go hungry while living their lives. A great white shark has the capacity to develop 20,000 teeth in their lifetime, one tooth growing for every one lost.

More about a great white shark’s teeth

A great white shark’s teeth are its primary weapon, used to catch and kill prey. They’re triangular in shape, with serrated edges that aid in ripping through the flesh of their prey.

The very strong and sharp teeth of a great white shark aren’t made of bone like the teeth of other animals, but rather of soft cartilage that’s attached to the jaw. So, if a tooth falls out, another one grows in its place, making this predator ready to engage at any time.

As members of the mackerel shark family, their teeth are made of hard enameloid, which is one of the hardest mineralized tissues.

Why do sharks have multiple rows of teeth?

Sharks have multiple rows of teeth because they must constantly replace their worn-out teeth. The teeth of a shark can break when it bites into something hard, such as bone or shell, and these creatures must constantly consume prey, or they’ll starve.

Having multiple rows of teeth allows the shark to continue feeding and grabbing prey while the lost teeth grow back. After two weeks from the time they lost their old teeth, sharks typically begin to grow new ones, and they go through the same process with the other teeth as well.

What do great white sharks eat?

Since the great white shark can grow thousands of teeth during its lifetime, these creatures have many options in the ocean. As newborns, these animals forage for fish and other small sharks in their surroundings.

When they reach adulthood, great whites begin to feed on larger sea creatures such as small whales, sea lions, seals, and sea turtles, and they have even been responsible for the deaths of some ocean swimmers. They hunt by ambushing their prey and attacking them with their powerful jaws.

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Breaching of great whites

A great white shark breaching
A great white shark breaching

The breaching of great whites is a phenomenon that occurs when the sharks leap out of the water and land back in it. Great whites are known to participate in this behavior, which has been observed while hunting. This hunting technique allows sharks to detect fast-moving prey on the water’s surface, such as seals.

To accomplish this, they’ll swim at speeds of up to 40 miles per hour in order to propel themselves into the air and grab the prey before dragging them back down into the depths. This allows them to fly 10 feet in the air while maximizing the force of their bite.

Are great white sharks afraid of dolphins?

Sharks are some of the apex predators of the sea. It is surprising to learn that great white sharks are frightened of dolphins, given their sharp teeth and voracious appetites. Dolphins are the most intelligent marine mammals, and they can defend themselves by fighting and scaring sharks away with their snouts.

Sharks may prey on a solitary dolphin, but a pod of this species will scare them away. Dolphins usually use their snouts to jab the underbelly of sharks, causing internal organ damage. Besides this, they’ll place their snouts on the shark’s gills in an effort to suffocate it.

Will all sharks eat humans?

Not all sharks prey on humans. Sharks are a diverse group of aquatic creatures, with many types that don’t eat humans.

The whale shark, for example, is a filter feeder that consumes plankton and other small organisms by sucking them through their mouths. Great white sharks, tiger sharks, and bull sharks are among the few shark species known to attack humans.

4 types of sharks with a lot of teeth

Sharks have different numbers of teeth, with some having hundreds, just like the great white shark. Here are some examples of sharks with a lot of teeth:

1. Frilled shark

Frilled shark underwater
Frilled shark underwater

The frilled shark is a rare and mysterious deep-sea shark rarely seen near the ocean’s surface. The name of this shark comes from the fringed gill slits on its throat. It has 300 trident-shaped teeth arranged in 25 rows on its jaws.

2. Bull shark

Bull shark
Bull shark | image by Albert Kok~enwiki via Wikimedia Commons | CC BY-SA 4.0

A bull shark is a type of shark that can reach lengths of 11.5 feet. They can swim to freshwater rivers and are found in tropical and warm waters all over the world. Bull sharks are known to be aggressive and will attack humans if they feel threatened, though they’ll typically only attack if hunted down or provoked.

They have 50 rows of teeth in their mouth, with seven teeth in each row, for a total of 350 teeth at any given time.

3. Basking shark


Basking sharks are the world’s second-largest fish. They can grow to be over 26 feet long and weigh up to 6 tons. The large mouth of these sharks contains 15 rows of teeth, nine rows on the upper jaw and nine rows on the lower jaw.

These creatures have 1,500 tiny teeth in their mouth, but unlike other sharks, they capture prey by filter feeding rather than biting.

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4. Whale shark

Whale shark underwaterk
Whale shark underwaterk

The whale shark is the world’s largest fish, with adults reaching lengths of 40 feet and weighing more than 20 tons. They have streamlined bodies, flattened heads, and very wide mouths, which is unusual for sharks. Their mouths contain 3000 tiny teeth arranged in more than 300 rows.

Final Thoughts

Many of the characteristics that make great white sharks the most feared and revered sea creatures also help them survive. Their size, body shape, and even their many teeth help them catch their prey.

Their powerful jaws are also best suited for tearing apart large animals, allowing them to hunt effectively. All of these factors combine to make the great white shark an amazing animal that has piqued the interest of many curious minds.