Stegostoma fasciatum 

Scope: Global

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Chondrichthyes Orectolobiformes Stegostomidae

Scientific Name: Stegostoma fasciatum
Species Authority: (Hermann, 1783)
Common Name(s):
English Zebra Shark
Squalus fasciatus Hermann, 1783
Taxonomic Source(s): Eschmeyer, W.N., Fricke, R. and Van der Laan, R. (eds). 2016. Catalog of Fishes: genera, species, references. Updated 31 March 2016. Available at: (Accessed: 31 March 2016).

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Vulnerable A2abcd+3cd+4abcd ver 3.1
Year Published: 2003
Date Assessed: 2003-04-30
Needs updating
Assessor(s): Pillans, R. & Simpfendorfer, C. (SSG Australia & Oceania Regional Workshop, March 2003)
Reviewer(s): Fowler, S., Cavanagh, R.D. & Kyne, P.M. (Shark Red List Authority)
A broadly distributed continental and insular shelf species of the Indian, west and central Pacific Oceans. Usually found within a narrow band of shallow coral reef habitat and soft bottom (to 62 m), that is heavily fished throughout all its range except Australia. Taken in inshore fisheries (demersal trawls, floating and fixed bottom gillnets and baited hooks) and seen in fish markets in Indonesia, Thailand, Malaysia, Philippines, Pakistan, India, Taiwan, and elsewhere. There are limited data on population declines in these areas, with the exception of the Gulf of Thailand, but the species is susceptible to local inshore fisheries and coral reef habitat loss and damage because of its habitat preferences and limited dispersion.

In Australia, where this species is abundant, has a wide distribution and is captured only in very small numbers in prawn trawls, it is assessed as Least Concern.

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:Inshore waters of the continental and insular shelves. Occurs in tropical, shallow inshore and offshore waters near the bottom; often found on and around coral reefs and on sandy plateaus near coral, at depths down to at least 62 m (Compagno and Niem 1998).
Countries occurrence:
Australia (New South Wales, Northern Territory, Queensland, Western Australia); Bahrain; Bangladesh; Cambodia; China; India; Indonesia (Papua); Iran, Islamic Republic of; Japan; Kuwait; Madagascar; Malaysia (Sarawak); Maldives; Mozambique; New Caledonia; Oman; Pakistan; Palau; Papua New Guinea; Philippines; Qatar; Saudi Arabia; Singapore; South Africa; Sri Lanka; Taiwan, Province of China; Tanzania, United Republic of; Thailand; United Arab Emirates; Viet Nam; Yemen
FAO Marine Fishing Areas:
Indian Ocean – western; Indian Ocean – eastern; Pacific – northwest; Pacific – southwest; Pacific – western central
Additional data:
Range Map:Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population:Often found in large aggregations (20 to 50) over sand near broken or continuous reef.
Current Population Trend:Decreasing
Additional data:

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology:Oviparous species. Reproductive periodicity unknown. Size at birth: 20 to 36 cm total length (TL). Average litter size unknown. Size maturity: 147 to 183 cm TL (male), 169 to 171 cm TL (female). Maximum size at least 235 cm TL. Growth rates unknown.

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): Threats within Australia are likely to be minimal, no target fisheries. Potentially susceptible to capture by prawn trawls, however very few are reported in the Northern Prawn Fishery (Mark Tonks, CSIRO Marine Research, pers. comm. 2003).

Although there is no direct evidence of population decline in the Indo-West Pacific, market surveys suggest this species is much less common than it used to be (L.J.V Compagno and William White, pers. comms. 2003). In the Gulf of Thailand, it was historically more abundant and it may have been adversely affected by the use of explosives and poisons on reefs in the Indian Ocean and western Pacific (Compagno 2001). Apart from baited hooks, S. fasciatum is susceptible to capture in a wide range of inshore fisheries. This, in combination with a narrow habitat range and limited dispersal makes this species vulnerable to population decline.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: There are currently no conservation measures in place for this species.

Classifications [top]

9. Marine Neritic -> 9.1. Marine Neritic - Pelagic
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 -> 5.4.3. Unintentional effects: (subsistence/small scale) [harvest]
♦ timing:Ongoing    
→ Stresses
  • 1. Ecosystem stresses -> 1.2. Ecosystem degradation
  • 2. Species Stresses -> 2.1. Species mortality

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

Bibliography [top]

Compagno, L.J.V. 1998. Carcharhinidae. In: K.E. Carpenter and V.H. Niem (eds). FAO species identification guide for fishery purposes. The living marine resources of the Western Central Pacific. Volume 2. Cephalopods, crustaceans, holothurians and sharks. FAO, Rome, pp. 1312-1360.

Compagno, L.J.V. 2001. Sharks of the world. An annotated and illustrated catalogue of shark species known to date. Vol. 2. Bullhead, mackeral and carpet sharks (Heterodontiformes, Lamniformes and Orectolobiformes). FAO species catalogue for fisheries purposes. No. 1. Vol. 2. FAO, Rome.

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

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

Citation: Pillans, R. & Simpfendorfer, C. (SSG Australia & Oceania Regional Workshop, March 2003). 2003. Stegostoma fasciatum. In: The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2003: e.T41878A10564988. . Downloaded on 07 December 2016.
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