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Species: Etmopterus bigelowi, Blurred Lantern Shark

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D1 origin < 1/3 interdorsal space behind pectoral axil
D1 spine > D1 base
denticles blunt, no points

Etmopterus bigelowi Shirai & Tachikawa, 1993

Blurred Lantern Shark

Body slender; head and snout flattened, broad, at level of eyes head is wider than deep; snout long, thick, flat; no nictitating eyelids; spiracle large, behind eye; mouth short, at acute angle; upper teeth with a stout, thick central point plus 1 (female) to 3-5 (male) smaller points on each side, 19-24 rows, lower teeth compressed and blade-like, with small, oblique tips that become more erect in large fish, 25-39 rows; five gill slits, all before pectoral base, very short, length ~2X spiracle; two dorsal fins, second bigger than first, both with long thick grooved spines; first dorsal located just behind pectorals, distance from pectoral axil to 1st dorsal >1/3 interdorsal space, center of first dorsal nearer pectoral fin axil than origin of pelvics; 1st dorsal spine long & stout, >/ = 1st dorsal base; pectoral fin broad, ~triangular, ends just before 1st dorsal fin; no anal fin; no ridges between pectoral and pelvic fins, no precaudal pits, no keel on tail base; tail long; tail fin strongly asymmetrical, notch at top; denticles on sides of body without points, block-like, skin smooth.

Dark brown to blackish, a little darker below; a small white blotch between eyes; fins with light edges; inconspicuous, blurry dark areas on side of head, above pelvic fin, at lower origin of tail fin, on underside of pectoral; luminescent organs visible as black dots and streaks on underside of head and body.

Size: 73 cm.

Habitat: Outer continental shelf and upper slopes; partly epipelagic in open ocean.

Depth: 110-1000 m.

All three oceans: Gulf of Mexico to Argentina.

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  • Marine
  • Marine Only
  • Inshore Only
  • Offshore Only
Water Column Position
  • Bottom
  • Bottom + water column
  • Near Bottom
  • Near Surface
  • Soft bottom (mud/sand/gravel/beach/estuary/mangrove/seagrass)
  • Water column
FishBase Habitat
  • Bentho-Pelagic
Feeding Group
  • Carnivore
  • Data
  • Data
  • Sharks/rays
  • Bony fishes
  • Octopus/squid/cuttlefish
Egg Type
  • Data
  • Live birth
  • No pelagic larva
Global Endemism
  • All species
  • Circumtropical ( Indian + Pacific + Atlantic Oceans)
  • Greater Caribbean non-endemic
Regional Endemism
  • Also in Brazil
  • Continent
  • Continent + Island (s)
  • Extends South of GC
  • GC non-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
  • Least concern
  • Listed
  • Not listed
Length Max
  • 73
Depth Range Min
  • 110
Depth Range Max
  • 1000