They say two heads are better than one, but it’s not clear if that applies to sharks.
On Friday, Nitin Patil, a fisherman from Palghar, India, caught two six-inch sharks with two heads.
“We don’t eat such small fish especially sharks, so I thought it was weird but decided to throw it away anyway,” Patil told Hindustan Times on Monday.
But before taking the shark back into the sea, Patil took several photos of the animal, which is still there. Posted on Twitter.
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Another fisherman who saw the small, two-headed shark, Umesh Palekar, told Hindustan Times that he shared photos with researchers to get to the bottom of where the sharks came from.
“We have never seen anything like this before,” Palekar told the newspaper. “We believe that one of the larger sharks may have given birth to this double-headed shark.”
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Scientists from the Indian Council of Agricultural Research – Mumbai’s Central Marine Fisheries Research Institute (ICAR-CMFRI) told the outlet that the discovery could be the first time two-headed sharks have been spotted off the coast of Maharashtra, India.
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Dr Akhilesh KVA, a scientist at ICAR-CMFRI, told the Hindustan Times that the shark looks like it could be a spadnos shark or a sharpnos shark.
“Both are alive and common in the waters of Maharashtra,” Akhilesh said.
Viviparos means “a living young man born into the body of a parent,” he wrote in the newspaper.
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Marine biologist Swapnil Tandel told the Hindustan Times that there could be several causes of the deformity.
“These findings are so few that it is difficult to find a reason for the discrepancy,” said Tsindle. “Genetic or metabolic disorders, viruses, pollution or overeating may be possible causes.”
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