Centroscymnus coelolepis 

Scope: Global
Language: English

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Chondrichthyes Squaliformes Somniosidae

Scientific Name: Centroscymnus coelolepis Barbosa du Bocage & de Brito Capello, 1864
Regional Assessments:
Common Name(s):
English Portuguese Dogfish

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Near Threatened ver 3.1
Year Published: 2003
Date Assessed: 2003-04-30
Needs updating
Assessor(s): Stevens, J. & Correia, J.P.S. (SSG Australia & Oceania Regional Workshop, March 2003)
Reviewer(s): Cavanagh, R.D. (Shark Red List Authority) & Graham, K.
Mainly a bycatch species taken by trawl and hook, although with some limited targeting, for its flesh and oil. Catches in Australia have been increasing in the last few years with relaxation of mercury laws and fishers looking for non-quota species in the South East Trawl Fishery. However, appropriate data on biomass or trends in abundance are lacking. The productivity of this species is likely to be low (although age estimates and annual fecundity are currently unknown) and further increases in catches should be viewed with concern. This species is of much lower abundance than D. calcea or C. crepidater and, although the quantitative data on populations are lacking, its lower abundance, demersal habits (not appearing to range into midwater) and suspected low productivity warrant a Near Threatened assessment.

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:A wide but patchy distribution in the Atlantic (Iceland to South Africa, and including the western Mediterranean; Grand Banks to Delaware Bay) and western Pacific (off Japan, New Zealand and Australia (from Cape Hawke, New South Wales to Beachport (South Australia), including Tasmania).
Countries occurrence:
Angola; Australia (New South Wales, South Australia, Tasmania, Victoria); Benin; Cameroon; Canada (Newfoundland I, Nova Scotia); Congo; Côte d'Ivoire; Equatorial Guinea; France; Gabon; Gambia; Ghana; Guinea; Guinea-Bissau; Iceland; Ireland; Japan; Liberia; Mauritania; Morocco; Namibia; New Zealand; Nigeria; Portugal; Senegal; Sierra Leone; South Africa; Spain (Canary Is.); Togo; United Kingdom; United States (Delaware, Maine, Massachusetts, New Jersey, Rhode Island); Western Sahara
FAO Marine Fishing Areas:
Atlantic – eastern central; Atlantic – northeast; Atlantic – northwest; Atlantic – southeast; Indian Ocean – eastern; Mediterranean and Black Sea; Pacific – northwest; Pacific – southwest
Additional data:
Range Map:Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population:Relatively common in the eastern North Atlantic where it is targeted off Portugal. Also relatively common off Japan, south eastern Australia and New Zealand. No data are available on population sizes or on long term trends in abundance.
Current Population Trend:Unknown
Additional data:

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology:On or near the bottom of the continental slope and abyssal plain in depths from 270 to 3,700 m. In Australia, catch rates are generally highest in depths greater than 1,000 m (Daley et al. 2002). Surveys conducted in Portugal never found this species in depths shallower than 800 m. There appears to be sex and size segregation by depth. The diet consists mainly of fish (including sharks) and cephalopods along with benthic invertebrates and cetacean species. Off southern Australia, teleost prey included relatively large demersal species such as alepocephalids and orange roughy, as well as small lantern fishes.

Population parameters in Australia are as follows (Daley et al. 2002):

Size at birth: 30 cm total length (TL)
Max size: 120 cm TL
Male maturity: 75 cm TL
Female maturity: 95 cm
Age at maturity: ?
Longevity: ?
Litter size: 12 (8-19)
Gestation:? (non-seasonal)
Breeding cycle: non-continuous

Maturity in Japan and in the north east Atlantic is reported at between 70 and 86 cm in males and at about 100 cm in females (Yano and Tanaka 1988, Girard and Du Buit 1999), with maximum size attained at 158 cm TL. There is evidence of size segregation by depth with smaller specimens at greater depths and pregnant females at shallower depths (Yano and Tanaka 1988, Girard and Du Buit 1999).

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): This shark has been exploited commercially for a long time. In Japan exploitation peaked during World War II, (because the livers are rich in squalene: 22 to 49% by weight), but quickly declined due to decreasing numbers caught. Taken by trawl, hook and gillnet both as a target and bycatch species for its liver oil and flesh. Important fisheries for this species exist in Suruga Bay, Japan and Portugal where it is targeted by a deepwater longline fishery. Between 1986 and 1999 catches in Portugal varied between about 300-900 tonnes with an increasing trend. The price of landed wet weight in Portugal has also been increasing since 1986 (US$1.5/kg in 1986 to US$3.5/kg in 1999), which suggests that demand is driving the fishing industry to continue exploitation. However, CPUE data were lacking and it is not currently possible to assess changes in abundance and biomass from any areas.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: 2002 regulations in the South East Trawl fishery in Australia prohibits the landings of livers unless the accompanying carcass is also landed.

Classifications [top]

10. Marine Oceanic -> 10.1. Marine Oceanic - Epipelagic (0-200m)

In-Place Research, Monitoring and Planning
In-Place Land/Water Protection and Management
In-Place Species Management
In-Place Education
5. Biological resource use -> 5.4. Fishing & harvesting aquatic resources -> 5.4.2. Intentional use: (large scale) [harvest]
♦ timing:Ongoing    

5. Biological resource use -> 5.4. Fishing & harvesting aquatic resources -> 5.4.4. Unintentional effects: (large scale) [harvest]
♦ timing:Ongoing    

Bibliography [top]

Clark, M.R., Anderson, O.F., Francis, R.I.C.C. and Tracey, D.M. 2000. The effects of commercial exploitation on orange roughy (Haplostethus atlanticus) from the continental slope of the Chatham Rise, New Zealand, from 1979 to 1997. Fisheries research 45: 217-238.

Clo, S., Dalu, M., Danovaro, R., and Vacchi, M. 2002. Segregation of the Mediterranean population of Centroscymnus coelolepis (Chondrichthyes: Squalidae): a description and survey. NAFO SCR Doc. 02/83.

Correia, J.P.S. and Smith, M.F.L. In prep. Elasmobranch landings for the Portuguese commercial fishery from 1986-1999.

Daley, R., Stevens, J. and Graham, K. 2002. Catch analysis and productivity of the deepwater dogfish resource in southern Australia. Report by CSIRO Marine Research and NSW Fisheries to the Fisheries Research and Development Corporation. FRDC Project 1998/108.

Girard, M. and Du Buit, M.H. 1999. Reproductive biology of two deep-water sharks from the British Isles, Centroscymnus coelolepis and Centrophorus squamosus (Chondrichthyes: Squalidae). Journal of the Marine Biological Association of the UK 79(5): 923-931.

Hernandez-Perez, M., Gallego, R.M.R. and Carlos, J.G. 2002. Sex difference in liver oil concentration in the deep-sea shark Centroscymnus coelolepis. Marine and Freshwater Research. 53: 883-886.

IUCN. 2003. 2003 IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Downloaded on 18 November 2003.

IUCN SSC Shark Specialist Group. Specialist Group website. Available at:

Last, P.R. and Stevens, J.D. 2009. Sharks and Rays of Australia. Second Edition. CSIRO Publishing, Collingwood.

Mauchline, J. and Gordon, J.D.M. 1983. Diets of the sharks and chimaeroids of the Rockall Trough, northeastern Atlantic Ocean.

Yano, K. and Tanaka, S. 1988. Size at maturity, reproductive cycle, fecundity, and depth segregation of the deep sea squaloid sharks Centroscymnus owstoni and C. coelolepis in Suruga Bay, Japan. Nippon Suisan Gakkaishi 54(2): 167-174.

Citation: Stevens, J. & Correia, J.P.S. (SSG Australia & Oceania Regional Workshop, March 2003). 2003. Centroscymnus coelolepis. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2003: e.T41747A10552910. . Downloaded on 21 August 2018.
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