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Species: Apristurus parvipinnis, Smallfin Cat Shark

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D1 origin behind pelvic insertion
D1 ~1/2 size D2
A base 4 X fin height
top edge C with denticle crest
distance between pectoral & pelvic 10-14% TL

Apristurus parvipinnis Springer & Heemstra, 1979

Smallfin Cat Shark

Body soft and flabby, with thin skin; body compressed; head broad, flattened, pointed and wedge shaped in side view; snout broadly rounded, 8.5-10.7% TL, longer than mouth width; skull without crests above eyes; mouth long, arched, mostly under eyes; teeth with 4 (3-6) cusps; lip furrows very long, upper furrows extend forwards to level of front of mouth, lower furrows shorter than uppers; nostrils large, upper flap pointed, reach across nostrils; eyes relatively large (orbit length 2.9-3.6% TL, high on sides of head, with a crest below them; 5 gill slits, on sides of head, length < eye; 2 dorsal fins small, at rear of body, without spines; 1st dorsal very small, much smaller than (1/2-1/4 area of) second, origin behind base of pelvics; origin of 2nd dorsal over ~middle of anal base; space between dorsals 6.7-9.4% TL; distance between pectoral and pelvic bases 11-14% TL; anal fin with very long base, base length 4-5X fin height, 16.1-18.6% TL, separated from tail fin by a small notch; tail fin elongate, top lobe with a subterminal notch, lower lobe weakly developed, with crest of denticles along top margin.

Uniform grey-brown to black.

Reaches 52 cm

Trawled from soft bottoms

Depth range 600-1220 m

Gulf of Mexico to French Guyana.

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  • Marine
  • Marine Only
  • Offshore
  • Offshore Only
Water Column Position
  • Bottom
  • Bottom only
  • Soft bottom (mud/sand/gravel/beach/estuary/mangrove/seagrass)
FishBase Habitat
  • Bathydemersal
Feeding Group
  • Carnivore
  • Data
  • Data
  • Bony fishes
  • Mobile benthic crustacea (shrimps/crabs)
  • Octopus/squid/cuttlefish
Egg Type
  • Benthic
  • Data
  • No pelagic larva
Global Endemism
  • All species
  • Greater Caribbean endemic
  • West Atlantic Endemic
Regional Endemism
  • Continent
  • Continent + Island (s)
  • Continental primarily
  • GC endemic
  • Island (s)
  • All species
  • Resident
Climate Zone
  • Equatorial (0-10N, Costa Rica / Venezuela)
  • Subtropical (23-35N, Florida / Carolinas / Bermuda)
  • Tropical (10-23N, Nicaragua / Cuba)
IUCN Red List
  • Data deficient
  • Listed
  • Not listed
Length Max
  • 52
Depth Range Min
  • 600
Depth Range Max
  • 1220