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The Biology of Sharks and Rays$
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Peter A. Klimley and Steven Oerding

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780226442495

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: January 2014

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226923086.001.0001

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Sense of Smell: Chemoreception

Sense of Smell: Chemoreception

Chapter:
(p.125) Chapter 6 Sense of Smell: Chemoreception
Source:
The Biology of Sharks and Rays
Author(s):

A. Peter Klimley

Publisher:
University of Chicago Press
DOI:10.7208/chicago/9780226923086.003.0006

The cartilaginous fishes, in particular the sharks, can detect their prey at great distances using their senses of smell and hearing. This chapter discusses the anatomy of the olfactory receptor, how it differs among different species, the receptor's sensitivity to a myriad of chemicals, and the ability to localize the source of an odor source. Molecules of various chemicals in continuous water flows create a gradient from a high to a low concentration. Cartilaginous fishes detect these molecules, which are dissolved in water, as they pass through their nasal cavities; this process is called chemoreception. The cartilaginous fishes are sensitive to a wide spectrum of chemicals, those most attractive are amino acids and amines.

Keywords:   sharks, cartilaginous fishes, olfactory receptor, animon acids, amines

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