In general, sharks swim (“cruise”) at an average speed of 8 kilometres per hour (5.0 mph) but when feeding or attacking, the average shark can reach speeds upwards of 19 kilometres per hour (12 mph).
The shortfin mako shark, the fastest shark and one of the fastest fish, can burst at speeds up to 50 kilometres per hour (31 mph).
The great white shark is also capable of speed bursts. These exceptions may be due to the warm-blooded, or homeothermic, nature of these sharks’ physiology.
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