The press is calling this shark “paunchy” and “ugly”

By Kelli Bender
October 05, 2015 09:06 PM


Marine biologists from government agency Marine Scotland made a surprising catch recently. The team rounded up a rare “sofa shark” during a deep-sea survey off the coast of Scotland. 

According to UPI, the six-foot female shark was the first of its kind seen in Scottish waters for 15 years. 

“Sofa sharks,” also known as false catsharks, can grow up to 10 feet long and get their nickname because they live “so far” underwater. Not really, that was a dad joke. The reason these swimmers, which do usually live as deep as 6,200 feet from the ocean’s surface, are called “sofa sharks” is because of their “paunchy, pillow-like” bodies.  

Sounds like bodyshaming to me. Other news outlets were quick to join in on the teasing. The Scotsman declared the find “has been likened to a blobfish, which was recently voted the world’s ugliest animal,” while CNET proclaimed the shark “won’t win any beauty pageants.” 

No wonder these animals live in the deep sea and limit their human interaction. Maybe the standards of beauty are different thousands of feet below sea-level! Maybe this shark needs its paunchy body to survive! Jeez! 

“I was pretty surprised when it landed in our boat,” marine biologist Francis Neat told The Scotsman. “We quickly measured and weighed it before sending it back into the water.”

 Can’t say we blame her for high-tailing it back down to the deep blue nothing, far from the bullying words and prejudicial scrutiny of the international news media.