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UT Professor's Shark Research Named One of Top Stories of 2008

Published: December 19, 2008
 A University of Tampa professor’s research on sharks’ bite force has landed on Discover magazine’s list of the “Top 100 Stories of 2008.”

Dan Huber, UT assistant professor and shark expert, is part of a research group that is analyzing the hunting performance of great white sharks — known as one of the world’s perfect predators.

The research team created a 3-D digital recreation of an 8-foot great white shark that reveals the animal’s biological mechanics, measures bite force and thus offers new insights on sharks’ habits, capabilities and evolution.

The research, Huber said, may lead to advances in protective swimwear, shark-proofing equipment and a better understanding of flexible cartilage — much like human ears and noses — which forms sharks’ whole skeletons.

Huber, who is working with biologists at the University of New South Wales in Sydney, Australia and the University of Newcastle in Newcastle, Australia, is also studying similar characteristics on feeding performance in tiger and bull sharks, which, along with the great white, are responsible for most attacks on humans.

News stories featuring Huber and his research have appeared on Bay News 9, The Discovery Channel, The History Channel, The Sydney Morning Herald, The Australian, The Daily Telegraph and Australia’s version of MSN.

“The Top Stories of 2008” article appeared in the January issue of Discover . To read more about Huber’s research, go to his Shark Lab website .