A family from Virginia were startled last week when a baby shark inexplicably fell from the sky, unexpectedly landing in the backyard of their home.
The incident took place in Virginia Beach, according to the Huffington Post, on the property of Sue Bowser and her family. Bowser asserted that her children found the shark, which measured roughly 13-inches-long, near a pond that is located in their backyard. They recalled that the shark was already dead when they discovered it, exhibiting what appeared to be talon marks along the length of its body.
WATCH: Shark falls from sky http://t.co/sArMSRI7Gs pic.twitter.com/5lSRCnga1n
— Yahoo Singapore (@YahooSG) July 9, 2015
Based on a photo of the shark, Susan Barco, a research coordinator and senior scientist with the Virginia Aquarium and Marine Science Center Foundation, said that it appeared to be a smooth dogfish shark. The species are native to the region, and are commonly preyed upon by ospreys which nest in the nearby First Landing State Park.
It is likely that the shark found its way to Bowser’s backyard when it was dropped by one of the ospreys on the way back to its nest. Such occurrences are common in the area, and at least one other resident has reported finding a pufferfish still alive and inflated in the city, as the Virginian-Pilot notes. Dogfish sharks give birth to their young in close proximity to the shore, leaving them well within range for the birds of prey.
The shark’s appearance comes at a seemingly perfect time, as Discovery is in the midst of its annual Shark Week. The yearly event, which was expanded for 2015, is a ratings powerhouse for the network, though it has come under fire in recent years for inaccurate science and sensationalism. Some of that stigma remains this year, yet as the Inquisitr previously reported, much of the Shark Week coverage has so far been more favorable.
— For The Win (@ForTheWin) July 8, 2015
Bowser noted that the Virginia Aquarium wasn’t interested in taking the dogfish shark, so for the moment she is keeping it in a freezer in her garage. The family plans to show the shark to relatives visiting from out-of-town in the next few weeks, and have yet to decide if they will bury it afterwards.
“This could be the shark house, but hopefully not too many more will be falling from the sky.”
[Image: The Virginian-Pilot via Twitter]