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Sharks use math to hunt

Marine predators cruise the seas using fractal principles

By
2:01pm, June 9, 2010

The great white shark in Jaws knew exactly where it was going — to the closest pair of plump legs around. But where might it head if it didn’t have a tasty human snack in its sights?

A new study suggests that some sharks and other marine predators can follow strict mathematical strategies when foraging for dinner. The work, reported online June 9 in Nature, is the latest aiming to show whether animals sometimes move in a pattern called a Lévy walk.

Unlike random motion — in which animals take similar-sized steps in any direction, like a drunk stu

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