A second rare shark has been found stranded on a British and Irish beach.
The corpse of the large female smalltooth tiger shark was discovered at a beach in Wexford, Ireland, at the weekend, the Telegraph has reported.
The first shark corpse was found washed ashore in Hampshire, southern England, last month and was beheaded by scavengers.
The Telegraph says expert believe the species, previously rarely seen in British waters, are making UK shores their full-time home.
Smalltooth tiger sharks have never before been found in British waters, as they tend to favour warmer waters. However, two strandings so close together geographically and temporally have raised suspicions.
Irish and British teams of scientists are now working together, looking at data collected around the whole of the UK to work out if they are here to stay.
The smalltooth tiger shark is classified as vulnerable and poses no threat to humans.
Dr David Curnick, Head of the Ocean Predator Lab at ZSL told the Telegraph: “However, a second individual in quick succession seems more than a coincidence and suggests that these sharks, which are more commonly found in deeper water, may be using UK and Irish waters more readily than we previously thought.
“Coupling these two new occurrences, which are the most northerly records for the species, with the flurry of recent reports of the species elsewhere, suggest that they may be expanding their range northwards and into more temperate waters.
“Over the coming weeks and months, we will be working closely with our colleagues in Ireland to understand what might be driving these shifts and, hopefully, work out what caused the death of both animals.”
Two Swiss tourists on holiday in the remote fishing village of Kilmore Quay on the south coast of Ireland made the discovery of the second shark, which was a 15-foot-long adult female.
She was roughly the size of a family saloon car and twice as big as the Lepe Beach case.