Home|Search|Identify|Taxonomic tree|Quiz|About this site|Feedback
Developed by ETI BioInformatics
Characteristics, distribution and ecology
Taxonomische classification
Synonyms and common names
Literature references
Images, audio and video
Links to other Web sites

Author: (Bonnaterre, 1788)

Field Marks:
No anal fin, dorsals spineless and far back, first behind pelvic origins, large scattered thornlike denticles on body and fins.

Diagnostic Features:
Dermal denticles on body and fins varying from small to very large, with many large, widely spaced, thorn or buckler-like denticles with bases not stellate and over a centimetre wide; some of these large denticles are fused in groups of 2 to 10 and may form large plates over 25 mm across.

Geographical Distribution:
Western Atlantic: Virginia, Massachusetts, USA; Argentina. Eastern Atlantic: Scottish and Irish Atlantic Slopes and North Sea to Medi- terranean, Morocco, Canary Islands, Senegal, Ivory Coast; Namibia to Cape of Good Hope, South Africa. Western Indian Ocean: South Africa, southern Mozambique, ?Oman, India. Western Pacific: Japan (southeastern Honshu), Australia (South Australia), New Zealand, ?Kiribati.

Habitat and Biology:
A large, sluggish bottom shark sometimes occurring in shallow water but primarily a deepwater species, occurring on the continental and insular shelves and upper slopes at depths from 18 to 900 m. Ovoviviparous. number of young per litter from 15 to 24; may breed in April in Indian waters. Eats smaller sharks (spiny dogfish), bony fishes (including ling, catfish, and lizardfish), and crabs.

Size:
Maximum total length about 3.1 m. Young born between 29 and 90 cm, adult females reported at 213 to 230 cm, adult males reported at 150 to 174 cm.

Interest to Fisheries:
Apparently relatively common only in the eastern Atlantic, especially from the North Sea to Portugal, where it is caught in bottom trawls and on line gear. Utilized in the eastern Atlantic for fishmeal; liver oil has high value for medicinal purposes in South Africa. Relatively unimportant as a fisheries species.

Type material:
Holotype: lost. Type Locality: "L'Ocean" (eastern North Atlantic).

Bramble shark (Echinorhinus brucus)