2006-08-11 / Community

Kids Boogie With Dead 'Sand Shark'

Kids on Beach 108 Street enjoyed a close-up look at a dead, 3-foot "Sand Shark" on Tuesday and then had fun towing it around the beach on a boogie board and showing it off to other curious beachgoers. The creature, which is properly referred to as a Smooth Dogfish - a kind of shark - is commonly found in shallow water from Canada to South America during this time of year, according to Todd Gardner, a biologist at the Atlantis Marine World Aquarium in Riverhead, Long Island. Gardner said the kids' find was a female of about 10 years of age and that it was likely killed after getting caught up in a fishing net, as evidenced by damage to its gills. Dogfish, he said, are considered "trash fish" to fishermen, who throw them back dead or injured. The Smooth Dogfish, which feeds on small fish and shellfish on the ocean floor, is harmless to humans, according to Gardner. "They don't have teeth like you would think of teeth in a shark," he said. Top photo: Kids follow as Lawrence, 11, pulls shark on boogie board. Bottom photo: Julie, 6, has a closer look at the shark's mouth as brother, Kieran, 8, holds shark by its dorsal fin. Sister, Audrey, (not shown) found shark on sand. Photos by Brian Magoolaghan

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