biology > course information > philip pepe's homepage > shark lab
Virtual Shark Lab
In this lab you will study the anatomy of the shark. Humans are fascinated by sharks. We are at once repulsed and attracted to these predators. We fear them, often unneccessarily, because they are so at home in an environment in which we are so ungainly. They are fishes that are highly adapted to the ocean environment and their movements are a study in grace. They have survived for millenia in a form which is as successful now as it was when dinosaurs walked the Earth.
What Do You Know?
- Do you know that the teeth of sharks are modified scales embedded in the skin of its mouth?
- Do you know that sharks have pits on their face used to detect electric fields?
- Do you know that sharks have paired fins that are homologous to your arms and legs?
- Do you know that the skeleton of a shark is made entirely of cartilage?
- Do you know that sharks have gills located in pouches along the sides of their heads?
- Do you know that a shark's heart pumps blood directly through its gills before the blood flows to the rest of its body?
- Do you know that the liver of a shark is its largest internal organ?
Complete the Laboratory Activities
The laboratory exercise consists of 6 activities.
Activity 1 External Anatomy of the Shark Activity 2 Digestive Anatomy of the Shark Activity 3 Respiratory Anatomy of the Shark Activity 4 Circulatory Anatomy of the Shark Activity 5 Urogenital Anatomy of the Shark Activity 6 Nervous Anatomy of the Shark
For a summary activity, find an article in a recent edition of a magazine that deals with sharks. Actively read the article and describe to yourself and one other person any aspects of the article that intersect with this lab's objectives.
For an alternative activity, watch a television broadcast that deals with sharks. Take notes during the show and relate what you saw to another person.