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TYPES OF SHARKS
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- CORAL CATSHARK
Scientific Name.... Atelomycterus Marmoratus
- General Information: The coral catshark is
a rather small species with a striking body coloration. The dorsal
fins, almost equal in size, have white spots on their tips and
the tail fin is short. Some unique features of the coral catshark
include the short caudal fin, the long lavial furrows at the corners
of the mouth, and nasal flaps that extend to the front of the
mouth. The eyes are set in front of large spiracles, which are
used to move water into the gill chambers when the shark is at
rest or feeding. The name comes from the cat-like shape and the
color of the eyes.
- Size: They grow to a maximum length of 28 inches.
The pups are about 4 inches long at birth. Mature males are easy
to recognize, as they are endowed with extremely long claspers.
- Color: This species has a striking coloration
of white spots on a dark background grading to a white underbelly.
- Feeding Habits: They are nocturnal and feed
on benthic invertebrates and small fishes. These sharks may also
feed on cryptic fishes in reef crevices during the day.
- Social Behaviour: Unknown.
- Habitat | Migration | Distribution: Coral catsharks
are commonly seen on shallow reefs in temperate and tropical waters.
They range in Pakistan to New Guinea, Philippines, China and southern
Japan. They live among coral branches and in the holes and tight
crevices of the reef. With their very slender and flexible bodies,
they can also be found swimming with sinuous movements near the
bottom. It occurs to depths of at least 33 feet.
- Reproduction: This species is oviviparous.
The female coral catshark lay purse-shaped egg cases, usually
two at a time, with tendrils to anchor the cases to the bottom.
The pups are about 4 inches long at birth, and are rarely encountered
as they spend their time sequestered within the reef, out of the
way of predators.
- Swimming: They have been found swimming with
a sinuous movements near the bottom.
- Coral Catshark Attacks: Harmless
- Population Report: Common.
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