Blacktip Shark

Blacktip Shark

Carcharhinus limbatus

Life History:


Description and Diagnostic Characteristics: The first and second dorsal fins, pectoral fins, and the lower lobe of the caudal fin are black-tipped (black markings may fade in adults and may be indistinct in juveniles) and the anal fin is white. The first dorsal fin is fairly large with a short free tip, originating slightly over or behind the insertion of the pectoral fins along the inner margin and the apex is pointed.

Size: Up to about 6½ feet

Age at Maturity: 36-39 inches total length (TL) and 38-44 inches (TL) for males and females respectively

Range: Massachusetts to Brazil, including the Gulf of Mexico and the Caribbean Sea. It is rare north of Delaware.

Habitat: Shallow coastal and continental shelf waters and the surface offshore. They are common near river mouths, bays and estuaries.

Angling Information:


Bait and Tackle: Fresh cut bait and artificial lures including topwater plugs, flyrod poppers, large streamer flies, slow-swimming jigs, and underwater plugs. Spinning and baitcasting outfits and fly outfits work well for these small sharks.

Fishing Method: Still fishing, casting, drifting

Food Value: Very good

State Regulation:


Daily Limit: 1 per angler or boat, which ever is less (This is a composite regulation grouping all sharks , except Atlantic sharpnose, Bonnethead, and Spiny dogfish, into this 1 per angler or boat limit. This does not include the sharks prohibited from harvest. If you are unsure of the species and whether you can keep it, release it) For more information see the federal regulations.

Minimum size: 54" FL

Federal Regulation:

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