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Shark Superpower It’s Electrifying

Get ready to dive into the depths of the ocean and explore the jaw-dropping world of sharks and their super-cool sixth sense! These magnificent creatures are not just teeth and fins; they’ve got a hidden power that will blow your mind! So buckle up, because we’re about to unravel the electrifying wonders of sharks’ electro sensory system in a way that’s as fun as a day at the beach!

Sharks’ Electrosensory System: The Electric Detectives!

Picture this: sharks have their very own secret agents working for them. These agents, called the “ampullae of Lorenzini,” are like tiny spies stationed all over their snout and head, ready to pick up on electrical signals from other sea critters. It’s like a superpower borrowed from a sci-fi flick, but trust me, it’s real!

Super Cool Science Stuff: Shark Style!

Now, you might be wondering, “How on Earth (or should we say, under the sea) do sharks do this?” Don’t worry, it’s not rocket science! Sharks have these fancy receptors called ampullae (pronounced am-puh-lee) that are filled with jelly. When they sense electrical fields from other creatures, their jelly-filled spies tingle and send messages straight to the shark’s brain, like a text message that says, “Hey, there’s a snack nearby!

Experiments Under the Sea: Shark Edition!

Oceanic loving scientists are busy testing the limits of the Shark’s ability! Check it out!

  1. The Electromagnetic Maze: Move over, lab rats; sharks are acing mazes too! In this experiment, scientists created a tricky maze with electrical fields at different points. And guess what? Our finned scientists navigated through it like they were born to play electric tag!
  2. Electroreceptor Mapping: Ever wondered where all these electric sensors are hidden? Scientists used super cool imaging to map out the ampullae of Lorenzini across different shark species. Some sharks, like the hammerheads, have the most spies – they’re the 007s of the underwater world!
  3. Feeding Frenzy: If you thought sharks were picky eaters, think again! In the lab, researchers simulated the electrical signals of struggling prey (Don’t worry, no critters were harmed!). And what happened? Sharky got hungrier than ever! Their sixth sense had them yelling, “Dinner time!”
  4. Camouflage Breaking: It’s like a real-life spy movie down there! Some sneaky prey animals try to hide from sharks by producing their own weak electric fields. But sharks are no fools! They’ve got tricks up their fins. They slow down and get stealthy to catch those camouflaging culprits red-handed!

Shark Week is sponsored by True North Homeschool Academy!

Check out our fall semester “Expedition Oceans” Class for 2nd-6th grade students!

Students will learn what causes the doldrums — and why it was the nightmare of early sailors. They will discover life above and beneath the waves through our animal of the week, which they will have an opportunity to sketch and read more about. Finally, they will discover the layers of the ocean as we dive as we board our virtual submarine and dive to Challenger Deep, the deepest part of the Mariana Trench.

Electrifying Secrets!

There you have it, folks – sharks’ electrifying sixth sense, served up with a side of fun! These ocean superheroes are way more than just sharp teeth and scary faces. With their secret ampullae of Lorenzini agents, they’re the detectives of the deep, catching electrical signals and ruling the underwater world!

Become a Shark Detective Yourself with the fun, FREE Science Experiment: Unleash Your 6th Sense!

Objective: In this fun science experiment, kids will learn about sharks’ incredible sixth sense by creating a “shark detector” to sense electrical fields like real underwater detectives!


  1. Two metal paper clips
  2. A small piece of modeling clay or playdough
  3. Two wires (about 2 feet each)
  4. A small battery (1.5V)
  5. A small LED bulb (optional)
  6. Tape
  7. Scissors
  8. Saltwater solution (1 tablespoon of salt mixed in a cup of water)


Step 1: Bend the Paper Clips Take one paper clip and gently straighten it, leaving a small curve at one end. Bend the other paper clip into an “L” shape, with one end straight and the other bent at a right angle.

Step 2: Prepare the Base Take the piece of modeling clay or playdough and mold it into a small, flat base. Press the straight end of the “L” shaped paper clip into the base, making sure it stands upright firmly. This will be the “shark detector.”

Step 3: Connect the Wires Strip about half an inch of insulation from the ends of both wires. Connect one end of each wire to the curved end of the first paper clip (the one with the small curve), making sure they are tightly attached. Tape the connection to keep it secure.

Step 4: Attach the LED (Optional) If you have an LED bulb, you can attach it to the other ends of the wires. Connect the longer leg of the LED to one wire and the shorter leg to the other wire. You can tape the LED in place to ensure it stays attached.

Step 5: Make the Saltwater Solution Prepare the saltwater solution by mixing one tablespoon of salt in a cup of water. Stir until the salt dissolves completely.

Step 6: Dive into Detecting Now, the fun part begins! Dip the curved end of the “shark detector” (the paper clip standing upright) into the saltwater solution. Be careful not to get the battery wet. The saltwater solution will create a weak electrical field, just like in the ocean!

Step 7: Super Shark Detector at Work Once the “shark detector” is in the saltwater solution, watch what happens! If you have attached an LED, it may light up or glow faintly. The weak electrical field created by the saltwater triggers the “shark detector” to react, just like real sharks sensing their prey’s electrical signals!

Step 8: Experiment and Explore Try different things to see how your “shark detector” reacts. For instance:

  • Move your hand close to the “shark detector” and observe the response.
  • Test it with other solutions or liquids to see if it reacts differently.
  • Experiment with different distances and positions to learn more about how sharks sense their prey.


You’ve just uncovered the mystery of sharks’ sixth sense by creating your very own “shark detector”! Just like these underwater predators, your detector senses electrical fields and alerts you to their presence.

Sharks’ electrosensory system is truly amazing, and with this fun experiment, you’ve experienced a glimpse of their superpower. Keep exploring, experimenting, and learning about the wonders of the natural world. Who knows? Maybe one day, you’ll make groundbreaking discoveries that could help protect these incredible ocean guardians!

Lisa Nehring
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