ODISHA, INDIA — That's unusual.
A researcher has discovered six hermaphrodite sharks pregnant off the coast in eastern India, reports Science News.
Marine biologist Alissa Barnes noticed there were more male bigeye houndsharks than females, yet the males had a "visible stomach bulge."
Barnes dissected the fish and found the 'male sharks' had external claspers — like most male houndsharks — but they also had ovaries like their female counterparts.
In her published report, Barnes called this phenomenon "intersexuality."
Six of the seven dissected sharks turned out to be pregnant, with Barnes finding at least two baby sharks in one.
Another shark biologist told Science News that hermaphroditism — an organism containing both male and female reproductive systems — is rare in sharks.
Barnes claims this abnormality may have been caused by "pollutants in the water" or "hormonal changes," reports Science News.