A 3m-long ‘bigeye thresher’ shark has been plucked out of Alicante port waters this week.
The body of the shark was spotted by port authorities on Sunday, before removing it with a crane today.
The shark will be taken to the Instituto de Ecologia Litoral, in El Campello, for confirmation of its species and an autopsy.
The bigeye thresher shark is found in temperate and tropical waters, going little further north than France’s Atlantic coastline.
It hunts in very deep water and rarely comes into contact with humans.
Its eyes can reach up to 10cm in width and are adapted to search for the silhouettes of prey, such as squid and schools of fish, in dim light.
The thresher is known to stun its prey and even birds with its large tail.
The meat is marketed fresh, smoked, or dried and salted, though it is not highly prized. The skin can be used to make leather, the liver oil for vitamins, and the fins for shark fin soup.
It is considered vulnerable on the IUCN red list.
The Mediterannean is home to few aggressive creatures, but great white sharks are known to patrol its waters.