Shorefishes of the Greater Caribbean online information system

Español  Contact

Species: Deania calceus, Birdbeak Dogfish, Birdbeak Dogfish Shark

All Families:   All Genera:   All Species:

snout v long, flat
D1 very long & low, origin over pectoral base
D2 shorter, higher & longer spine
tail base: no ventral keel
denticle crown: ~0.5 mmm long

Deania calceus (Lowe, 1839)

Birdbeak Dogfish, Birdbeak Dogfish Shark

Body slender; snout extremely long, broad, flat, like a spatula, length before mouth >1/2 head length; no nictitating eyelids; eyes huge, green to yellow; spiracles present, large, just behind eye; lip furrows long; upper & teeth blade-like, without secondary cusplets; upper teeth with erect, triangular cusps, narrower bases; lower teeth much larger than upper teeth, overlapping, broad bases, oblique cusps; tooth rows: 25-35 upper, 27-33 lower; five gill slits, all before pectoral fin; two dorsal fins with large grooved spines, 2nd fin spine much larger; 1st dorsal extremely long based, low, origin over bases of pectorals, distance from origin of spine to free rear tip >> free rear tip to 2nd dorsal spine; 2nd dorsal higher & shorter than 1st; pectoral free rear tips narrow, angular to round, not elongated; no anal fin; tail base without a keel along lower edge;; tail fin strongly asymmetrical, upper lobe with strong notch under tip; skin surface very rough, skin denticles large, ~erect, narrow star-shaped bases, tips on a long stalk, like 3-pointed pitchforks; denticles on flank moderately large, crown length ~0.5 mm; no keel on lower edge of tail base.

Uniform light to dark grey or grey-brown; fins darker; small fish with rear of dorsal fins blackish.

Reaches 122 cm

On and over the bottom in deep water

Depth range 70-1470 m, most common at 600-1000 m

All 3 oceans; both sides of the Atlantic; Virginia to Colombia.

High Resolution Map Download

Species Data Create Report Export as Word File Export as Excel File
  • Marine
  • Marine Only
  • Offshore
  • Offshore Only
Water Column Position
  • Bottom
  • Bottom + water column
  • Mid Water
  • Water column
  • Mud
FishBase Habitat
  • Bentho-Pelagic
Feeding Group
  • Carnivore
  • Data
  • Data
  • Bony fishes
  • Octopus/squid/cuttlefish
  • Pelagic crustacea
Egg Type
  • Data
  • Live birth
Global Endemism
  • All species
  • Circumtropical ( Indian + Pacific + Atlantic Oceans)
  • Greater Caribbean non-endemic
Regional Endemism
  • Continent
  • Continent only
  • Extends North of GC
  • GC non-endemic
  • All species
  • Resident
Climate Zone
  • Equatorial (0-10N, Costa Rica / Venezuela)
  • Subtropical (23-35N, Florida / Carolinas / Bermuda)
  • Temperate (>35N)
IUCN Red List
  • Least concern
  • Listed
  • Not listed
Length Max
  • 122
Depth Range Min
  • 70
Depth Range Max
  • 1470