Domain: Eukaryota
    This group is shared by all organisms that have cells with a nucleus (TheFreeDictionary 2013). Other organisms in this group include morel mushrooms as well as many others.

Kingdom: Animalia
    Whitetip reef sharks share this kingdom with a very diverse group. Included in this group are organisms such as the night train millipede, the honeypot ant, and the swimming sea cucumber.

Phylum: Chordata
    Bilateral symmetry, notochord and pharyngeal gill slits present and some stage during life  history, three tissue layers (TheFreeDictionary 2013). Whitetip reef sharks share this phylum with a large variety of organisms including the Clymene dolphin, pilot whales, and western fence lizards.

Class: Chondrichthyes
    This class is shared among sharks and rays, including great white sharks.

Order: Carcharhiniformes
    Known as ground sharks. Whitetip reef sharks share this order with an organism that sometimes hunts them--the tiger shark.

Family: Carcharhinidae
    Known as requiem sharks. Charactarized by five gill slits, round eyes, young born fully developed (TheFreeDictionary 2013). Whitetip reef sharks share this family with one of their competators for food, the blacktip reef shark.

Genus: Triaenodon
   The whitetip reef shark is the only member of this genus.

Species: T. obesus
The name "obesus" means large, which is ironic considering that the whitetip reef shark is quite a bit smaller than many of its relatives.

Whitetip reef sharks are represented by the phylum chordata in the above phylogentic tree.



The phylogenetic tree seen above shows the different orders of currently extant sharks and lists external characteristics that separate these orders. The whitetip reef shark is represented by the order carcharhiniformes.

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