Apristurus australis 

Scope: Global
Language: English

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Chondrichthyes Carcharhiniformes Scyliorhinidae

Scientific Name: Apristurus australis
Species Authority: Sato, Nakaya & Yorozu, 2008
Common Name(s):
English Pinocchio Catshark
Taxonomic Source(s): Eschmeyer, W.N., Fricke, R. and Van der Laan, R. (eds). 2016. Catalog of Fishes: genera, species, references. Updated 2 May 2016. Available at: (Accessed: 2 May 2016).
Taxonomic Notes:

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2016
Date Assessed: 2015-05-15
Assessor(s): Kyne, P.M., Cavanagh, R.D. & Lisney, T.J.
Reviewer(s): Walls, R.H.L. & Lawson, J.
Contributor(s): Walls, R.H.L.
Facilitator/Compiler(s): Kyne, P.M. & Walls, R.H.L.
The Pinocchio Catshark (Apristurus australis) occurs off western, southern, and eastern Australia on the continental slope and seamounts at depths of 485-1,035 m. It is a discarded bycatch of trawl fisheries off southeast Australia. However, large areas of its range are closed to trawling (including large areas >700 m deep), or receive little fishing effort (for example, the northeast and western parts of its range). If fishing for Orange Roughy (Hoplostethus atlanticus) is reopened in deepwater off southern Australia, then bycatch levels of this and other deepwater sharks should be monitored. At present, there are no major threats to the population, so the Pinocchio Catshark is assessed as Least Concern.
Previously published Red List assessments:

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:The Pinocchio Catshark has a wide range around Australia, from off Cairns (Queensland) to seamounts south of Tasmania, westwards to South Australia, and off Western Australia northwards to Shark Bay. It possibly occurs across the Great Australian Bight and may also occur off New Zealand (Last and Stevens 2009).
Countries occurrence:
Australia (New South Wales, Queensland, South Australia, Tasmania, Victoria, Western Australia)
FAO Marine Fishing Areas:
Indian Ocean – eastern; Pacific – southwest; Pacific – western central
Additional data:
Lower depth limit (metres):1035
Upper depth limit (metres):485
Range Map:Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population:There is no information on population size or structure for this species.
Current Population Trend:Unknown
Additional data:

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology:The Pinocchio Catshark occurs on the continental slope and around seamounts at depths of 485–1,035 m (Last and Stevens 2009). It reaches at least 61 cm total length (TL), possibly up to 83 cm TL, with males maturing at about 45–50 cm TL and females at about 45–55 cm TL (Last and Stevens 2009). Its biology is virtually unknown.

Use and Trade [top]

Use and Trade: This species is not known to be utilized or traded.

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): The distribution of this species includes some heavily fished areas, particularly off southeast Australia by sectors of the Southern and Eastern Scalefish and Shark Fishery. The Pinocchio Catshark is a discarded bycatch in trawl sectors of that fishery (Walker and Gason 2007). However, off southeast Australia, large areas below 700 m depth are closed to trawling (Patterson et al. 2015), while in the west, effort in the Western Deepwater Trawl Fishery is very low (Chambers and Bath 2015), and in the south, the South Tasman Rise Fishery is currently closed (Patterson and Bath 2015). This species thus finds refuge at depth outside of current fishing activities. The situation may change if Orange Roughy fisheries were to be re-opened in future.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions:

Areas below 700 m closed to trawling off southeast Australia provide refuge for this species at depth (Patterson et al. 2015), as would marine protected areas in the Australian Commonwealth Marine Reserve network.

Citation: Kyne, P.M., Cavanagh, R.D. & Lisney, T.J. 2016. Apristurus australis. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2016: e.T42704A68608780. . Downloaded on 23 April 2017.
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