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Author: Pellegrin, 1914

Field Marks:
Mouth well in front of eyes, spineless dorsal fins far posterior on tail, greatly elongated thick precaudal tail, long and low anal fin just anterior to caudal fin, lateral ridges on trunk, dorsal fins very large, colour dark with light blue spots but no dark saddles.

Diagnostic Features:
Body and tail stout, snout thick and truncated anteriorly; a lateral ridge present on each side of trunk.Dorsal fins very large and angular, considerably larger than pelvic fins, dorsals without projecting free rear tips; interdorsal space very short, less than first dorsal base; first dorsal origin over pelvic fin bases; origin of anal fin slightly behind free rear tip of first dorsal, anal fin length from origin to free rear tip considerably less than hypural caudal lobe from lower caudal origin to free rear tip. Colour pattern of light blue spots on a dark grey-brown background, but no dark transverse bands.

Geographical Distribution:
Western Indian Ocean: Madagascar. Until recently only known from the holotype. Dr MarieLouise Bauchot and Ms Gabriella Bianchi (pers.comm.) recently saw this species in market catches in Madagascar, confirming the occurrence of the species there.

Habitat and Biology:
A rare and little-known carpetshark, apparently confined to Madagascar. Virtually nothing is known of its biology.

Size:
Maximum total length at least 67 cm.

Interest to Fisheries:
None at present.

Remarks:
Fowler (1941) synonymized this species with the F similar C. plagiosum, but Bass, d'Aubrey and Kistnasamy (1975b) retained it as a valid species without comparing it with C. Plagiosum or other Chiloscyllium species. After comparing the redescription of the holotype of C. caerulopunctatum in Bass, d'Aubrey and Kistnasamy (1975b) with specimens of C. plagiosum I tentatively recognize this species as being valid. It apparently differs from C. plagiosum in having larger dorsal fins, a shorter, blunter snout, possibly wider mouth, and a different coloration, with smaller blue rather than whitespots and lighter ground colour.

Type material:
Holotype: Museum National d'Histoire Naturelle, Paris, 670 mm female. Type Locality: Fort Dauphin, Madagascar.

Bluespotted bambooshark (Chiloscyllium caerulopunctatum)