Domain- Eukarya

Kingdom- Animalia

Phylum- Chordata

Class- Chondrichthyes

Order- Carcharhiniformes

Family- Carcharhinidae

Genus- Carcharhinus

Species- Carcharhinus leucas



Eukarya- The bull shark belongs to the Domain Eukarya because it is multicellular, and its cells have a nucleus.  Its cells also have membrane bound organelles and linear DNA. 

Animalia- The bull shark is heterotrophic, motile, and its cells lack cell walls.

Chordata- The bull shark is a chordate because it shows bilateral symmetry; it has an endostyle, and a postanal tail. It also has a dorsal nerve chord and pharyngeal structures.

Chondrichthyes- The bull shark belongs to this class because it is a cartilaginous fish. Only the organismís teeth and sometimes their vertebrate are bone.

Carcharhinformes- The bull shark has two dorsal fins without spines, and an anal fin is present. Members of this order have 5 gill slits with the last one to three over the pectoral fin. The eyes of the bull shark also have a nictitating fold or membrane.

Carcharhinidae- In this family, development of young is usually viviparous with young born fully developed. Members of this family can live in fresh and salt water. These sharks contain round eyes with internal nictitating eyelids, and no nasoral grooves. Members of this family are usually large.

Carcharhinus- Members of this genus include the most known sharks including the tiger shark, blue shark, and milk shark.  This genus shares the characteristics of round eyes, and having their pectoral fins completely behind their five gill slits.  This genus is also viviparous. 

Carcharinus leucas- The Bull Shark can be recognized by a combination of characteristics  including a stout body, short blunt snout, triangular serrated teeth in the upper jaw and no fin markings as an adult. This species has a second dorsal fin about one third the height of the first, small eyes, and no skin ridge between the two dorsal fins. It is grey above and pale below, sometimes with a pale stripe on the flank.


Bull Shark Relatives

Family Genus/Species Common Name


Carcharhinus altimus

bignose shark


Carcharhinus amblyrhynchos

grey reef shark


Carcharhinus brevipinna

spinner shark


Carcharhinus falciformis

silky shark


Carcharhinus galapagensis

Galapagos shark


Carcharhinus isodon

finetooth shark


Carcharhinus leucas

bull shark


Carcharhinus limbatus

blacktip shark


Carcharhinus longimanus

oceanic whitetip shark


Carcharhinus melanopterus

blacktip reef shark


Carcharhinus obscurus

dusky shark


Carcharhinus perezi

Caribbean reef shark


Carcharhinus plumbeus

sandbar shark


Phylogenetic Tree