Apristurus kampae 

Scope: Global
Language: English

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Chondrichthyes Carcharhiniformes Pentanchidae

Scientific Name: Apristurus kampae Taylor, 1972
Common Name(s):
English Longnose Catshark
French Holbiche Tapir
Spanish Pejegato Trompudo
Taxonomic Source(s): Eschmeyer, W.N. and Fricke, R. (eds). 2015. Catalog of Fishes: genera, species, references. Updated 1 October 2015. Available at: (Accessed: 1 October 2015).
Taxonomic Notes: The genus Apristurus contains at least 32 described species and a relatively large number of potentially undescribed ones. Morphological conservatism and, until recently, a lack of objectively defined characters makes this one of the most taxonomically confused shark genera (Compagno 1984, Nakaya and Sato 1999).

Nakaya and Sato (1999) defined three species groups within Apristurus: the longicephalus-group (two species), brunneus-group (20 species) and spongiceps-group (10 species). Apristurus kampae belongs to the spongiceps-group, characterized by: a short, wide snout (prenarial length <6% total length (TL)); 7 to 12 valves in the spiral intestine; upper labial furrows subequal to, or shorter than the lower furrows; a continuous supraorbital sensory canal.

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Data Deficient ver 3.1
Year Published: 2015
Date Assessed: 2014-03-19
Assessor(s): Huveneers, C., Duffy, C.A.J., Cordova, J. & Ebert, D.A.
Reviewer(s): Jew, M.L. & Nehmens, M.C.
Facilitator/Compiler(s): Lawson, J., Walls, R.H.L. & Dulvy, N.K.

Longnose Catshark (Apristurus kampae) is a poorly-known deepwater catshark found on the upper continental slope from 180-1,888 m depth. It has been recorded in the Eastern Pacific off Oregon to the Gulf of California. It has also been reported in the waters surrounding the Galápagos Islands, but given difficulties in identification among Apristurus species, this record is contested. The biology and distribution of Longnose Catshark is poorly known given these identification issues, but also because it is rarely encountered in its deepwater habitat. Length at 50% maturity is 485 mm total length for males, and 490 mm total length for females, with a maximum reported size for this species is 647 mm total length. Reproduction is oviparous, with a single egg laid per oviduct. This species is taken incidentally as bycatch in deepwater trawls and sablefish traps off California, and no management or conservation measures are currently in place. Insufficient information is available to assess the species beyond Data Deficient.

Previously published Red List assessments:

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:Longnose Catshark occurs from Oregon to the Gulf of California (Ebert et al. 2013). This species has also be identified in the waters surrounding the Galápagos Islands (Nakaya and Sato 1999), however Compagno (1984) noted that the identification was uncertain. An undescribed species closely resembling Longnose Catshark may occur off California and juvenile Panama Ghost Catshark (Apristurus stenseni) may also be confused with this species (Compagno 1984). A similar, undescribed species with large gill slits, a high rounded anal fin and a white margin to the terminal lobe of the caudal fin occurs in New Zealand and Australia (Apristurus sp. D, Last and Stevens 1994; Apristurus sp. E, Paulin et al. 1989). The limits of this species' distribution are unknown (Castro 2011).
Countries occurrence:
Mexico (Baja California, Baja California Sur); United States (California, Oregon)
FAO Marine Fishing Areas:
Pacific – eastern central
Additional data:
Lower depth limit (metres):1888
Upper depth limit (metres):180
Range Map:Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

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

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology:The biology and distribution of Longnose Catshark is poorly known due to confusion with other Apristurus species, and because of its low encounter rate due to its deepwater habitat. It occurs near the bottom over the upper continental slope from 180-1,888 m depth, with gravid females and juveniles usually occurring at depths between 1,000 and 1,200 m deep (Flammang et al. 2011, Ebert et al. 2013).

Length at 50% maturity is 485 mm total length (TL) for males, and 490 mm TL for females (Flammang et al. 2008). The maximum reported size for this species is 647 mm TL (Flammang et al. 2008). Reproduction is oviparous, with a single egg laid per oviduct. Apristurus spp. egg cases are usually thick-walled and about 5-6.8 cm long and 2.5-2.9 cm wide. Size at hatching is reported to be 140 mm TL (Ebert 2003). The anterior end of the case has a long weak fibrous thread on each corner. The posterior end usually has two small processes, each with a long coiled tendril. As in shallow water scyliorhinids the coiled tendrils are probably used to attach the egg cases to hard substrates and/or biogenic structures as they are laid.

Use and Trade [top]

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

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): Longnose Catshark, and other species of deepwater Chondricthyans, are often taken as in bycatch in deepwater trawls and sablefish traps off California. Deepwater fisheries have expand at an annual rate of 62.5 m depth per decade from 1950-2004 (Watson and Morato 2013). If they continue to expand this species should be monitored, and assessed. However, species-specific identification is often challenging due to the soft bodies of these sharks, which are often damaged during the fishing process (Castro 2011).

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: No management measures are currently in place for this species.

Classifications [top]

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

In-Place Research, Monitoring and Planning
  Action Recovery plan:No
  Systematic monitoring scheme:No
In-Place Land/Water Protection and Management
In-Place Species Management
In-Place Education
1. Research -> 1.2. Population size, distribution & trends
1. Research -> 1.3. Life history & ecology
1. Research -> 1.5. Threats

Bibliography [top]

Castro, J.I. 2011. The Sharks of North America. Oxford University Press, New York.

Compagno, L.J.V. 1984. FAO Species Catalogue. Sharks of the World: an annotated and illustrated catalogue of the shark species known to date. Part 2 - Carcharhiniformes. FAO Fisheries Synopsis No. 125, Vol. 4(2). FAO, Rome.

Compagno, L.J.V. 1984. FAO species catalogue. Vol. 4. Sharks of the world. An annotated and illustrated catalogue of shark species known to date. FAO Fisheries Synopsis No. 125, Volume 4, Part 1.

Ebert, D.A. 2003. Sharks, Rays and Chimaeras of California. University of California Press, Berkley.

Ebert, D.A., Fowler, S. and Compagno, L. 2013. Sharks of the World. Wild Nature Press, Plymouth.

Flammang, B.E., Ebert, D.A., and Cailliet, G.M. 2008. Reproductive biology of deap-sea catsharks (Chondrichthyes: Scyliorhinidae) in the eastern north pacific. Environmental Biology of Fishes 81: 35-49.

Flammang, B.E., Ebert, D.A. and Cailliet, G.M. 2011. Intraspecific and Interspecific Spatial Distribution of Three Eastern North Pacific Catshark Species and Their Egg Cases (Chondrichthyes: Scyliorhinidae). Breviora 525: 1-18.

IUCN. 2015. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2015-4. Available at: (Accessed: 19 November 2015).

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

Nakaya, K. and Sato, K. 1999. Species grouping within the genus Apristurus (Elasmobranchii: Scyliorhinidae). In: B. Séret and J.-Y. Sire (eds). Proceedings of the 5th Indo-Pacific Fish Conference (Nouméa, 3-8 November 1997). Paris, Society Francaise d’Ichthyologie et Instutue de Recherches pour le Development: 307–320.

Paulin, C., Stewart, A., Roberts, C. and McMillan, P. 1989. New Zealand fish: a complete guide. Te Papa Press.

Watson, R.A. and Morato, T. 2013. Fishing down the deep: Accounting for within-species changes in depth of fishing. Fisheries Research 140: 63-65.

Citation: Huveneers, C., Duffy, C.A.J., Cordova, J. & Ebert, D.A. 2015. Apristurus kampae. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2015: e.T44215A80671609. . Downloaded on 26 September 2018.
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