Hemiscyllium trispeculare


Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family

Scientific Name: Hemiscyllium trispeculare
Species Authority: Richardson, 1843
Common Name(s):
English Speckled Carpet Shark, Speckled Catshark

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2003
Date Assessed: 2003-04-30
Needs updating
Assessor(s): Heupel, M.R. (SSG Australia & Oceania Regional Workshop, March 2003)
Reviewer(s): Fowler, S. & Cavanagh, R.D. (Shark Red List Authority)
This little-known species is possibly an Australian endemic (it may also occur in Indonesia). It is not targeted by fisheries and is distributed over a reasonably large coastal range. These small sharks are unlikely to be significantly impacted as a bycatch species and at least a portion of the species' range is protected from fishing. This species may be utilized by the aquarium industry, but the extent of exploitation is unknown.

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: Hemiscyllium trispeculare is restricted to the northern coast of Australia from northern Queensland (Rockhampton) to northern Western Australia (Ningaloo).
Australia (Northern Territory, Queensland, Western Australia)
FAO Marine Fishing Areas:
Indian Ocean – eastern; Pacific – western central
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: Little is known about the population size in this range and no scientific data are currently available.
Population Trend: Unknown

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: This species resides in shallow tropical waters along the coast and on coral reefs. H. trispeculare reaches a maximum size of 79 cm total length (TL) and is oviparous. Individuals are commonly observed under coral structures. Adults and juveniles probably feed on benthic invertebrates and small fishes similar to H. ocellatum. Little else is known about the biology of this species.
Systems: Marine

Use and Trade [top]

Use and Trade: aquarium use

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): This species may be taken as bycatch by commercial vessels and may be used in the aquarium trade.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: None. However, this species is protected in part of its range via closed fishing areas and protected reserves in the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park.

Citation: Heupel, M.R. (SSG Australia & Oceania Regional Workshop, March 2003) 2003. Hemiscyllium trispeculare. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2015.2. <>. Downloaded on 04 September 2015.
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