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False color electron microscope images of denticles

Form fits function. Spikey, ridged scales reduce drag in swift-swimming sharks, while thicker, rounder scales offer protection from abrasion. The three-pronged scale on top may serve a defensive function. False color electron microscope images of denticles (not to scale); clockwise from upper left: lemon shark, tiger shark, great hammerhead shark, nurse shark, bull shark, and scalloped hammerhead shark.

Photo Credit: 

Erin Dillon, Aaron O'Dea and Jorge Ceballos