A large shark with a robust body; head with long, bulbously conical snout; eyes moderately large, without nicitating eyelids; mouth relatively long, extending behind eyes; 5 gill slits, all before pectoral; teeth moderately large with prominent dagger-like middle point and 2-3 small points on either side; first dorsal fin much nearer pectorals than pelvics; second dorsal fin noticeably smaller than first dorsal, its origin over or slightly behind pelvic insertion, tail fin asymmetrical with moderate subterminal notch and strong ventral lobe.
Medium grey on back, light grey below; young with black tips on dorsal fins.
Size: reaches 410 cm.
Habitat: rocky shores.
Depth: 10-530 m.
Circumglobal in mainly subtropical waters; in the eastern Pacific it is known from Southern California to the western Gulf of California; recently discovered at Malpelo, where it may have a resident population.