A new species of ‘walking sharks’ have been discovered in Australia.

Research has found that the animals walk on the bottom of the sea to make it easier to catch their prey, contradicting long-held ideas that sharks are slow to evolve.

Dr Mark Erdmann, the co-author of the study, said: “We found the sharks, which use their fins to ‘walk’ around shallow reefs, only split off evolutionarily from their nearest common ancestor about nine million years ago, and have been actively radiating into a complex of at least nine walking sharks ever since.”

He added: “That may seem like a long time ago, but sharks have ruled the oceans for more than 400 million years. This discovery proves that modern sharks have remarkable evolutionary staying power and the ability to adapt to environmental changes.”

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