Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Chondrichthyes Squaliformes Dalatiidae

Scientific Name: Euprotomicrus bispinatus
Species Authority: (Quoy & Gaimard, 1824)
Common Name(s):
English Pygmy Shark
French Squale Pygmée
Spanish Tollo Pigmeo

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2006
Date Assessed: 2006-01-31
Assessor(s): Burgess, G.H.
Reviewer(s): Cavanagh, R.D., Heupel, M.R., Simpfendorfer, C.A. & Kyne, P.M. (Shark Red List Authority)
A tiny oceanic shark (one of the smallest shark species in the world reaching 26.5 cm total length). Widespread, recorded from numerous oceanic locations in the Pacific, Indian and Atlantic Oceans. Little known of its biology although it is reported to have a fecundity of eight pups/litter. Its small size and epipelagic/mesopelagic habitat precludes it from capture in most fisheries and as such there are no apparent threats to the species. Given this, and its widespread distribution, it is assessed as Least Concern.

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: Widespread in central ocean basins of warm-temperate and subtropical oceans, including those off Australia, New Zealand, southern Africa, Madagascar, Brazil, and Island nations in the north and south central Pacific.
Countries occurrence:
Australia; Brazil; Madagascar; New Zealand; South Africa
FAO Marine Fishing Areas:
Atlantic – southeast; Atlantic – southwest; Indian Ocean – eastern; Indian Ocean – western; Pacific – eastern central; Pacific – northwest; Pacific – southeast; Pacific – western central
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: No information on stock size or structure.
Current Population Trend: Unknown
Additional data:

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: A meso- and epipelagic (depths of capture: surface to 300 m) oceanic (over 1,829 to 9,938 m depth) species. A bioluminescent vertical migratory species that ascends to or near the water surface by night, descending into midwater (and possibly all the way to the bottom) by day. Reproduction aplacental viviparous, but no details of biology available. One of the smallest shark species, reaching a maximum size of 26.5 cm TL (Compagno et al. 2005, Compagno in prep a). Consumes fishes, bathypelagic squid, and crustaceans.

Life history parameters
Age at maturity (years): Unknown.
Size at maturity (total length): Female: 22 to 23 cm TL; Male: 17–19 cm TL.
Longevity (years): Unknown.
Maximum size (total length): 26.5 cm TL (females), 22.0 cm TL (males).
Size at birth: >6.0 cm TL, Average reproductive age (years): Unknown.
Gestation time (months): Unknown.
Reproductive periodicity: Unknown.
Average annual fecundity or litter size: 8.
Annual rate of population increase: Unknown.
Natural mortality: Unknown.
Systems: Marine

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): None apparent. Small size and epipelagic/mesopelagic nature may preclude it from capture in most fisheries.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: No current conservation actions are in place.

Like many deeper water species more information on biology, ecology and importance in fisheries are required to further assess its status and any future conservation needs.

Citation: Burgess, G.H. 2006. Euprotomicrus bispinatus. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2006: e.T60210A12320696. . Downloaded on 04 October 2015.
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