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Species: Squatina armata, South Pacific angel shark

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large thorns: snout, between eyes, spiracles
chest & abdomen with denticles
nostril barbel narrow, curved, notched
back: double row thorns
pectoral front edge - large thorns

Squatina armata (Philippi, 1887)

South Pacific angel shark

Front half of body and head (including pectoral and pelvic fins) roughly diamond shaped and greatly flattened; with a distinct neck between the pectorals; head oval, relatively narrow behind; distance between nostrils distinctly less than that between eyes; nostril barbell narrow, notched and convex; eyes relatively small (6.3 times in space between them) on top of head, with prominent spiracles behind them; mouth at front; pectoral and pelvic fins greatly enlarged; dorsal fins small, about equal sized, situated near tail fin; lower lobe of tail larger; denticles on lower surface almost entirely covering the pectoral and pelvic fins, with a transverse band on chest, a large patch on the abdomen and almost entirely covering the underside of the tail. Holotype with heavy thorns on snout, between eyes and spiracles; a double row of large hooked thorns down midback and between dorsal fins; large thorns on front edge of pectorals.
Grey to grey-brown, mottled and blotched with olive; irregular dusky areas on tail and dorsal fins; lower surface white.
Reaches 150 cm.
On sandy bottoms.
Depth range 3-200 m.
Costa Rica to Chile.

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  • Marine Only
  • Marine
  • Inshore Only
  • Inshore
Water Column Position
  • Bottom only
  • Bottom
  • Soft bottom only
  • Mud
  • Reef associated (reef + edges-water column & soft bottom)
  • Sand & gravel
  • Soft bottom (mud/sand/gravel/beach/estuary/mangrove/seagrass)
FishBase Habitat
  • Demersal
Feeding Group
  • No Data
  • Carnivore
  • No Data
  • Octopus/squid/cuttlefish
  • Bony fishes
Egg Type
  • No pelagic phase
  • No pelagic larva
  • Live birth
  • No data
Global Endemism
  • All species
  • TEP non-endemic
  • East Pacific endemic
Regional Endemism
  • All species
  • Temperate Eastern Pacific, primarily
  • Continent only
  • Peruvian province, primarily
  • Continent
  • Tropical Eastern Pacific (TEP) non-endemic
  • Resident
Climate Zone
  • Equatorial (Costa Rica to Ecuador + Galapagos, Clipperton, Cocos, Malpelo)
  • South Temperate (Peruvian Province )
IUCN Red List
  • Data deficient
  • Listed
  • Not listed
Length Max
  • 150
Depth Range Min
  • 3
Depth Range Max
  • 200