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Great white sharks have five to seven rows of teeth at once. But predatory sharks are actually covered in teeth—the skin of these sharks is made up of tiny teeth-like scales called denticles.
If you shudder at the thought of a bee sting, you probably don't want to think about what a shark bite might feel like. Believed to be the key to understanding these prehistoric creatures, shark teeth are comparable to serrated, razor-sharp knives. The teeth are situated in numerous rows, which vary depending on the species. It's believed that up to the first eight rows are used as "working" teeth—meaning those are the ones that snag and tear prey apart. Often, these front line teeth are ripped out or fall out naturally. However, the smaller teeth from the dozens of rows behind will take their place. Sharks grow up to 30,000 teeth in a lifetime, which is more than 937 times the number of human teeth. Check out this playlist to learn more about the four different types of shark teeth, how they're shaped, and what they tell us about the origins of the species.
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