Are Lion Sharks Real? (How do they look?)

Lion sharks are a rumoured species of shark, like confused with the tiger shark. They could be amazing creatures, but they are not actually a real species.  

The truth is that there are no living lion sharks – but what if there were? What would they look like? And what would they eat? If lion sharks were real, how would they look?

I will go trough and try to answer all of these questions in this article!

Lion sharks do not exist (But…)

In recent years, the internet community has debated whether Lion sharks actually exist.

With some other sharks, like the catsharks, tiger shark, and leopard shark being named after felines, it is tempting to believe that lion sharks exist.

However, lion sharks do not exist and are likely a misconception due to the existence of tiger sharks and leopard sharks that are named after other big cats.

What would a lion shark look like?

The Lion Shark (Lion Shark) is a hypothetical species of vertebrate marine animal that is the result of an intermixing between a shark and a lion.

Sharks and lions are both very ferocious creatures, so a lion-shark hybrid would likely look somewhat evil.

A lion shark drawing
A lion shark could look many different ways, but a mythological lion shark could look something like this.

The difference between lions and sharks is that lions are actually much smaller than sharks, and the latter are about 12 feet to 16 feet thick minus the dorsal fin.

A female great white shark can weigh up to 4000 pounds, whereas a lion only weighs around a tenth of that at 400 pounds!

Therefore, a lion shark would have a large advantage over an ordinary lion because it would be much bigger, but would likely suffer against other sharks that are naturally bigger!

It would be a cross between a lion and a shark. It would be like a shark but with a lion’s head so that it could use it’s head like a lion but underwater. If it would have like a lion’s head, its head would be a lot bigger than the average shark’s head.

lion shark drawing
One interpretation of a lion shark.

It might also have a large mane that it could puff up to scare away enemies and its teeth would be larger than those of an average shark, but it would have much fewer teeth as a shark has more than 100 times more teeth than a lion!

What would a lion shark eat if it was real?

You might be wondering what a lion shark would eat if it were real.

Both species, sharks and lions, eat meat, so a lion shark would most likely also be a carnivore!

Both are hunters and lions typically go for the throat and suffocate their prey, while a smaller shark may only take advantage of a weak swimmer to get their meal.

While most sharks don’t attack people, some larger sharks feed on larger marine mammals like seals and sea lions.

lion sharks

A lion shark would likely be a large and dominant shark “king of the sea” species able to take down larger marine mammals and even humans!

While most lion attacks are non-lethal and meant to scare off an enemy, a shark will continue to attack until it has finished its victim.

Therefore, a lion shark would likely be more aggressive than a lion, but perhaps less aggressive than other sharks.

What is a lion shark in mythology?

Both lions and sharks have fearsome reputations. Nonetheless, there is an important difference between the two.

The story of a lion shark comes from confusion with tiger sharks, but they could be creatures in mythology.

A lion shark would be a large fish that can eat humans. In Greek mythology, the shark was a demon, or a monster, and a lion shark would likely be evil as well.

Perhaps it would symbolize a creature that once had a lion form, but was turned into a shark by a god as a punishment for boasting about his beauty.

Lion sharks are not real but tiger sharks are!

While lion sharks are not real, tiger sharks are. Tiger sharks live in tropical waters and hunt squid, clams, sea birds, and even smaller sharks.

Tiger sharks are commonly found off the coasts of North America and the Caribbean Sea.

Tiger sharks look a lot like the great white shark and they are scavengers as well.

They are named so due to their predatory nature and slightly striped look.

The tiger shark is considered one of the world’s most dangerous animals. Its attack rate is high in Brazil, but low elsewhere.

tiger shark swimming
The tiger shark is named so due to its stripes.

Between 1580 and 2012, only 100 tiger shark attacks were recorded worldwide. Of these, only seven were fatal. Unfortunately, these incidents give a bad name to the species and contribute to a drop in its population.

Its distinctive appearance makes it difficult to miss, as the sharks are slender and dark on the dorsal side. The tiger shark has two dorsal fins and a large caudal fin on the tail. Its head is wedge-shaped, with long labial furrows and a blunt nose.

The tiger shark’s teeth are well-developed and curved, with a deep notch on the outer margin. The teeth are larger at the front of the jaw and less prominent at the back and corner of the mouth.

The tiger shark is a large predator native to tropical and subtropical oceans. Though exceptional specimens can grow up to 18 feet long, they are more common and weigh between 10 and 13 feet.

Their stripes gradually fade as they age and they will start to resemble the Great Whie Shark as they get older!

 The tiger shark is a highly effective ambush predator and can kill large numbers of marine animals.

However, they have not been found in the Mediterranean Sea. Because of their large size, the tiger shark is an ocean-dwelling species that can be found in both deep seas and shallow coastal waters.

The catshark family (no lions here!)

While there are no actual lion sharks, there are a whole family of cat sharks!

The catsharks are a group of bottom dwelling fishes with peculiar behaviour and appearance that look a bit like cats.

Catsharks belong to the Scyliorhinidae family, which includes 17 genera and more than 150 species of sharks!

Ironically, they also include the chain dogfish species but not the tiger sharks or any lion sharks!

Another species, called the sandy dogfish, has many small spots on its body and varies in personality.

They have evolved strange defensive strategies to protect themselves. One type of cat shark is known as the balloon shark, which is pale grey in color and can grow up to 40 inches long. It lives in shallow rocky waters where it feeds on lobsters and crabs.

There are many different species of catshark, and each species is distinctive.

They do not have much more than their name in common with cats. Sharks are fish and not mammals so they lacks the parental care of a cat, however.

The Australian marbled catshark is one of the smaller species of catshark. It lives on the northern and western coasts of Australia, where it lives on rocks.

Its eggs must sit for nearly a year before they hatch, and some of these eggs are even drilled by gastropods.

Conclusion

There is no such thing as a real lion shark, because they do not exist!

However, lion sharks might be real creatures tp be discovered in the future. However, they would likely be more similar to tiger sharks and leopard sharks than any mythological interpretation!

They would likely look like tiger sharks or leopard sharks but just with a different body shape.

Perhaps these animals were themselves once real but became extinct long ago and science hasn’t been able to find them in archeological records. Unlikely, but something to think about!

If you are more interested in mythological hybrid creatures I wrote a post about what the fusion between a lion and a wolf would look like!