Bull Shark

Bull Shark

Carcharhinus leucas

Life History:


Description and Diagnostic Characteristics: First dorsal fin is large, triangular, rearward sloping, originating over or slightly behind pectoral insertion. Snout is much shorter than width of the mouth and bluntly rounded. It has small eyes and a stocky heavy body, especially in adults. The color is pale to dark gray above, white below and no interdorsal ridge.

Size: Can get to around 11½ feet

Age at Maturity: 10-18 years for females and 9-15 years for males (depends on location)

Range: New York to Brazil, including Gulf of Mexico and the Caribbean Sea. Rare north of Delaware.

Habitat: Primarily shallow coastal water; common in lagoons, bays, and river mouths; often enters far into fresh water.

Angling Information:


Bait and Tackle: Dead fish or cut bait with fresh-cut Barracuda being a favorite. Will take artificial baits if water is chummed, including large flies and topwater plugs. Spin, plug, and fly casters all can work but it is better suited to medium ocean outfits.

Fishing Method: Still fishing, drifting

Food Value: 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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