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Family: SQUATINIDAE, Angel Sharks


All Families:   All Genera:   All Species:

flat, wide body
2 Ds, on tail
C asymmetric, lower lobe larger
mouth opens at front
large pectorals behind distinct neck

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FAMILY SQUATINIDAE

ANGEL SHARKS

Most species of angelsharks are relatively small, usually under about 1.6 m. They are unusually shaped sharks characterised by a flattened ray-like head and body, with a well defined neck at the origin of the pectoral fin; eyes on top of the head, with a large spiracle behind each; mouth opens at the front of the head; 5 gill slits situated under the head; greatly expanded pectoral and pelvic fins; 2 very small dorsal fins, on the tail; no anal fin; small asymmetric tail fin, lower lobe larger.

The family contains a single genus, Squatina, with 20 species, with one western north Atlantic species and one endemic in our region.  

PREPARED BY D ROSS ROBERTSON, AFTER CARPENTER (2002)