Oldest living shark, born in 1500s, discovered in North Atlantic Ocean

Oldest living shark, born in 1500s, discovered in North Atlantic Ocean

The shark is estimated to be up to 512 years old, which would make it the oldest living vertebrate in the world and even older than Shakespeare.

A recent study led by Danish scientist Julius Nielsen found out these shocking details after analyzing the female Greenland Shark that roamed in the icy waters of Arctic. The researchers suggested that the shark could have been born around the year 1505 by measuring the overall size of the sea creature.

Since radiocarbon dating has 95 percent accuracy, the shark could be between 272 and 512 years in age.

The Greenland shark lives in -1C to 10C waters and can swim as deep as 7,200ft. Now, the scientists speculated this age range by the fact that this specific species of Greenland shark grows at a rate of about 1cm per year. These 28 sharks were examined by the use of radiocarbon dating of the eye lenses of the shark's eyes and this helped the scientists locate which was oldest of them all. According to experts, the shark measures 18ft and was the oldest in a group of 28 Greenland shark which was analysed for the study.

Greenland shark Found in North Atlantic Ocean Could be 512 Years Old (Pictures)
Oldest living shark, born in 1500s, discovered in North Atlantic Ocean

Due to their longevity, academics in Norway believe that the bones and tissues of Greenland sharks may give us insight into the impact of climate change and pollution over a long period of history. The flesh is lined with a certain type of chemical that gives a sensation of being intensely drunk when consumed.

Scientists believe that the sharks have existed for so long that their bones and tissues might provide helpful insights into the effects of Global warming and pollution over the time span of this 500 + years.

Praebel had been looking into how Greenland sharks' "long life" genes could shed light on what determines life expectancy in different species, including humans.