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Species: Hydrolagus mccoskeri, Galapagos ghost-shark

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grey + many elongate/round white spots
belly white + fine brown mottling
D2 weakly indented
head small, snout short

Hydrolagus mccoskeri Barnett et al, 2006

Galapagos ghost-shark

Body compressed, elongate, tapering to a filamentous tail; head relatively small; snout short, round, blunt; eyes large, bright green; nostrils large, before mouth, connected to outer corner of mouth by a deep groove covered with a flap; mouth under head; teeth are plates, 2 pairs above, 1 pair below; gill opening before pectoral, covered by fleshy operculum; 2 separate dorsal fins; 1st dorsal fin large, triangular, erect, with a long, slightly curved spine at front, that spine attached except for upper 1/5 free of fin; 2nd dorsal fin low, long based, its border weakly indented in center; anal fin absent; pectoral fins broad, triangular; pelvic fins broad, triangular; tail fin elongate, lance-like, both lobes about equal in height , with a whip-like rear filament; lateral line canals well developed, on head and body noticeably open; skin smooth, no scales; males with large, multipointed external sex organs.

Color: upper head and body medium grey with numerous narrow, well defined, circular and elongate white spots and blotches; lower head and body white to pale tan, with fine brown mottling; lower tail white; 1st dorsal dark, with some white spots on the lower rays; 2nd dorsal fin dark, with pale base and outer edge; pectoral and pelvic fins dark, with whitish rear edges.

Reaches 38 cm.

Depth range: 400-510 m.

Lives on bottoms with a mixture of rocks and sand.

Known from the Galapagos.

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  • Marine
  • Marine Only
  • Inshore Only
  • Inshore
Water Column Position
  • Bottom only
  • Bottom
  • Reef associated (reef + edges-water column & soft bottom)
  • Rocks
  • Reef and soft bottom
  • Soft bottom (mud/sand/gravel/beach/estuary/mangrove/seagrass)
  • Sand & gravel
FishBase Habitat
  • Bathydemersal
Feeding Group
  • No Data
  • Carnivore
  • Mobile benthic worms
  • Mobile benthic gastropods/bivalves
  • No Data
  • Mobile benthic crustacea (shrimps/crabs)
  • Bony fishes
Egg Type
  • No data
  • Benthic
  • No pelagic larva
Global Endemism
  • Tropical Eastern Pacific (TEP) endemic
  • East Pacific endemic
Regional Endemism
  • Island (s)
  • TEP endemic
  • TEP oceanic island (s) endemic
  • Galapagos Islands endemic
  • Island (s) only
  • Resident
Climate Zone
  • Equatorial (Costa Rica to Ecuador + Galapagos, Clipperton, Cocos, Malpelo)
IUCN Red List
  • Listed
  • Data deficient
  • Not listed
Depth Range Min
  • 400
Depth Range Max
  • 510
Length Max
  • 38