In common with most sharks, the graceful shark is an aggressive predator, feeding largely on bony fishes, such as jacks and mackerel, but occasionally on other elasmobranchs and large crustaceans, dwelling on or near the ocean floor (1). Prey is located using acute eyesight, a keen sense of smell, and specialised organs around the head that detect electric vibrations. The prey is captured in sharp, serrated teeth, after a sudden, sideways snap of the crushing jaw. Although high-up the food chain, the graceful shark may itself fall prey to other sharks, such as the bull shark (Carcharhinus leucas) and the tiger shark (Galeocerdo cuvier) (4).
Very little is understood about the breeding biology of the graceful shark. However, this viviparous shark appears to mate in January and February, with one to nine well-developed, live young born after a gestation period of nine to ten months. It is possible that pregnant females travel to nursery grounds to give birth, with the young sharks developing in shallow coastal waters offering safety from predators. The young sharks reach maturity at around 110 to 115 centimetres in length (1).
Despite the fearsome reputation of many large sharks, few are considered to be dangerous. The graceful shark is harmless to humans and, as with other shark species, the real cause for concern is the threat posed to the graceful shark by humans (3) (5).