Do Sharks Have Tongues?

do sharks have tongues

Sharks! Lots of people probably think of sharks as a large hulking animal with giant teeth. Does this name bring fear or excitement to you? Also, in the mind of so many people, they wonder if “do sharks have tongues.”

Sharks are a group of cartilaginous fish; members of Chondrichthyes class characterized by a cartilaginous skeleton. They respire through their gills and not through their lungs.

Sharks can be as small with just 22 centimeters for male pygmy sharks and 25 centimeters for female pygmy sharks and can be up to 6.4 meters like the white sharks.

There are about 440 different species of sharks today in the world. The most notable of all shark is the “Bull Shark.”

In 2019, I was so curious to learn more about sharks, so I visited an aquarium to see how these apex predators live. It was fun watching them so close, how they swim and feed. I saw how they move to attack some meal that was sent into the aquarium.

do sharks have tongues

Suddenly, a question popped into my head, “Do sharks have tongues.”  Out of my curiosity, I asked some experts around if sharks do have tongues, which I got the answer that I will be sharing here, together with my research.


So, do sharks have tongues? Yes, all sharks have a tongue, a tongue-like structure called a Basihyal. The Basihyal is a small piece of cartilage, very short and thick.

It is located at the bottom part of the mouth. In humans, tongues are appreciated as it is used for eating, talking, breathing, drinking, and so on but not the same for sharks.

Tongue In Sharks

Sharks do not have tongues, and so they do not use their tongues to taste the meal they eat. Tongues in sharks are known as Basihyal.

For most species of sharks, Basihyal appears to be relatively immovable and useless, except for the species of cookiecutter sharks, the bullhead sharks, and the carpet sharks.

The cookiecutter sharks make use of the Basihyal to rip apart their prey. For the bullhead sharks and the carpet sharks, their Basihyal is flattened, larger, movable, and use it to suck up its prey from a far distance.

Some Fact About Sharks

Need to know more about sharks, read below some surprising facts about them.

Do sharks Have Taste Buds?

Do sharks Have Taste Buds? If you are wondering if sharks have taste buds, let me tell you today that Sharks have taste buds. YES, sharks have taste buds; they are located on the papillae lining the mouth and throat, which are used to know whether the prey is edible or not.

do sharks have tongues

Do Sharks Eat People?

Sharks do not eat people, but they attach humans. Humans don’t have the blubber and body fat-to-bone ratios that are required by sharks; humans don’t taste like food for sharks.

They just bite people and swim away. The problem is that shark bite can kill a human. Although most people survive sharks bite, if a person dies as a result of a shark bite, it is usually a result of the loss of blood from the wound.

The most common type of attack is when sharks are looking for food, they see a human and bites it.

Do Sharks Eat Other Sharks?

Yes, sharks eat other sharks. Smaller sharks are susceptible to attack by more giant sharks. For instance, Sevengill sharks usually eat leopard sharks.

Are Sharks warm or cold-blooded animals?

Most sharks are cold-blooded (ectothermic). However, there are  5 species of sharks that have warm-blooded capabilities (endothermic). The family Lamnidae, also known as mackerel sharks, which include the shortfin mako (Isurus oxyrinchus), white (Carcharodon carcharias), longfin mako (Isurus paucus), salmon (Lamna ditropis), and porbeagle (Lamna nasus).

Can Sharks Survive In Fresh Water?

Most of the shark species live in saltwater. Some can survive in Brackish water ( a mixture of freshwater and saltwater).

The species of the bull sharks and the speartooth sharks can survive in freshwater for any length of time. They have special physiological adaptations characteristics.

do sharks have tongues

How Do Sharks Survive In Water?

Unlike most fish, sharks don’t have a swim bladder. They have to keep moving in the water; without constant movement, sharks will not be able to pump water through their gills, and this can cause them to sink to the bottom of the sea, and they will lose respiration. Most sharks species can hear their prey from miles away.

In summary, sharks do have tongues. Their tongues don’t function in the same manner as human tongues. We hope you enjoyed our article about sharks. let’s hear your opinion in the comment section and share this article.

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Sniff Around  Is a top blog that talks about Pet animals and various types of animal. Also talks about how they live and interact with people and environment.

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