Cephaloscyllium laticeps 


Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Chondrichthyes Carcharhiniformes Scyliorhinidae

Scientific Name: Cephaloscyllium laticeps
Species Authority: (Duméril, 1853)
Common Name(s):
English Australian Swell Shark, Draughtboard Shark, Nutcracker Shark, Sleepy Joe

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2003
Date Assessed: 2003-04-30
Needs updating
Assessor(s): White, W.T. (SSG Australia & Oceania Regional Workshop, March 2003)
Reviewer(s): Fowler, S. & Cavanagh, R.D. (Shark Red List Authority)
Cephaloscyllium laticeps is a common, shallow water (to at least 60 m) southern Australian endemic that forms a significant component of the southeastern Australia shark gill net fishery. Although catches of C. laticeps in this fishery were shown to drop between 1973 to 1976 and 1998 to 2001, i.e., 660 to 305 animals caught per 1,000 km-hours of 6-inch gill net, this species is typically released as it is of little commercial value. There is also limited fishing activity in the western part of its range. Mortality is also probably low because this species is extremely resilient and can survive for a considerable length of time out of the water. Therefore, C. laticeps appears to be of low risk in the well managed fishery in southeastern Australia and indeed throughout its range.

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: Cephaloscyllium laticeps is an endemic to southern Australia, found from the Recherche Archipelago in Western Australia to Jervis Bay in New South Wales (Last and Stevens 1994).
Countries occurrence:
Australia (New South Wales, South Australia, Victoria, Western Australia)
FAO Marine Fishing Areas:
Indian Ocean – western; Pacific – southwest
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Current Population Trend: Unknown
Additional data:

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: Cephaloscyllium laticeps occurs inshore on the continental shelf to at least 60 m in depth and is probably the most common catshark in this region (Last and Stevens 1994).

This species reaches at least 100 cm total length (TL) (possibly 150 cm) with males maturing at about 82 cm and females laying egg cases approximately 13 cm by 5 cm which are attached to seaweed and bottom-dwelling invertebrates and the young hatching at about 14 cm TL (Last and Stevens 1994).

C. laticeps feeds on small reef fish, crustaceans and squid (Last and Stevens 1994).
Systems: Marine

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): Cephaloscyllium laticeps forms a significant component of the southeastern Australia shark gill net fishery (Walker et al., in press) but there is little fishing pressure further to the west. This species is usually returned to the water and fishing mortality appears to be low due to its resilience: it can survive for a considerable length of time out of the water (T. Walker, pers. comm.). Although this species is of little commercial value, it has recently been marketed in some areas (J.D. Stevens, pers. comm.).

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: Continued catch data for this species is required for future assessments.

Citation: White, W.T. (SSG Australia & Oceania Regional Workshop, March 2003). 2003. Cephaloscyllium laticeps. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2003: e.T41753A10553551. . Downloaded on 28 May 2016.
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