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Halaelurus quagga 

Scope: Global
Language: English
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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Chondrichthyes Carcharhiniformes Scyliorhinidae

Scientific Name: Halaelurus quagga (Alcock, 1899)
Common Name(s):
English Quagga Catshark
Synonym(s):
Scyllium quagga Alcock, 1899
Taxonomic Source(s): Alcock, A., 1899. A descriptive catalogue of the deep-sea fishes in the Indian Museum: being a revised account of the deep-sea fishes collected by the marine survey ship Investigator.

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Data Deficient ver 3.1
Year Published: 2017
Date Assessed: 2017-02-09
Assessor(s): Ebert, D.A., Tesfamichael, D., Valinassab, T. & Akhilesh, K.V.
Reviewer(s): Pollom, R., Jabado, R. & Kyne, P.M.
Contributor(s): Kyne, P.M.
Facilitator/Compiler(s): Jabado, R., Kyne, P.M.
Justification:
The Quagga Catshark (Halaelurus quagga) is a poorly-known catshark recorded from very few specimens. It has a fragmented known distribution occurring off southwestern India, and around the Socotra Archipelago (Yemen).

This small shark (reaching ~37 cm total length) occurs at depths of 54-300 m, but appears to be a mostly deep-water species. The development of intense deep-sea bottom trawl fishing off southwestern India where the species is most likely to be taken as bycatch is a concern. Its small size means that it would be discarded at sea, but survivorship would be low. There are currently no deep-sea fishing activities around the Socotra Archipelago. Declines off southwestern India are suspected, but the extent to which fishing is affecting the species there is not known. Despite some concern, the species is assessed as Data Deficient, with a urgent need to assess bycatch rates in the Indian deep-sea shrimp trawl fishery.
Previously published Red List assessments:

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:The Quagga Catshark is endemic to the Arabian Seas region, with a fragmented known distribution, occurring off southwestern India, around the Socotra Archipelago, Yemen, and possibly from the Gulf of Aden, but these records need to be confirmed as they may be of a different species.
Countries occurrence:
Native:
India (Kerala)
FAO Marine Fishing Areas:
Native:
Indian Ocean – western
Additional data:
Continuing decline in area of occupancy (AOO):Unknown
Extreme fluctuations in area of occupancy (AOO):UnknownEstimated extent of occurrence (EOO) - km2:
Continuing decline in extent of occurrence (EOO):UnknownExtreme fluctuations in extent of occurrence (EOO):Unknown
Continuing decline in number of locations:Unknown
Extreme fluctuations in the number of locations:Unknown
Lower depth limit (metres):300
Upper depth limit (metres):54
Range Map:Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population:To date there have been no dedicated surveys or population estimates for this species. Further research is needed to determine population size and trends in abundance. The population is suspected to have declined off southwestern India due to the development of deep-sea fishing there (Akhilesh et al. 2011a), but no specific data are available.
Current Population Trend:Unknown
Additional data:
Continuing decline of mature individuals:Unknown
Extreme fluctuations:UnknownPopulation severely fragmented:Unknown
Continuing decline in subpopulations:Unknown
Extreme fluctuations in subpopulations:UnknownAll individuals in one subpopulation:Unknown

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology:

The Quagga Catshark has a known depth range of 54 to 300 m (Weigmann 2016), but it appears to be a mostly deep-sea species. The biology of this species is mostly unknown, but size at birth is ~8 cm total length (TL), males mature at 28-35 cm TL and it reaches a maximum size of about 37 cm TL (Akhilesh et al. 2011b). An adult female measured 36.8 cm TL and had eight egg cases, four in each uterus.

Systems:Marine
Continuing decline in area, extent and/or quality of habitat:Unknown
Movement patterns:Unknown

Use and Trade [top]

Use and Trade:

No utilization or commercial trade of this species is currently known to exist. It is likely discarded at sea given its small size and low economic value.

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s):

The development of intense deep-sea bottom trawl fishing off southwestern India where the species is most likely to be taken as bycatch is a concern (Akhilesh et al. 2011a). This deep-sea shrimp fishery started in 1999 and developed rapidly, with trawler numbers peaking in 2000-2001 before dropping significantly, although there are still some 300-400 boats operating in the fishery (Fernandez et al. 2015). The discard rate is high for non-commercial species in this fishery. This shark's small size means that it would be discarded at sea, and survivorship would be low. There are currently no deep-sea fishing activities around the Socotra islands. 

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions:

Currently there are no species-specific conservation measures in place. Research is required on life-history, the impact of threats, and potential and actual levels of bycatch. Surveys are needed to further define this species' distribution and abundance to further assess status and any future conservation needs.


Citation: Ebert, D.A., Tesfamichael, D., Valinassab, T. & Akhilesh, K.V. 2017. Halaelurus quagga. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2017: e.T161625A109913019. . Downloaded on 16 December 2017.
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