The Angular angelshark is a shark species found off the coast of South America. It is also known as the Spiny angelshark.
Angular Angelshark Scientific Classification
|Scientific name||S. guggenheim|
Angular angelsharks are shaped like rays, measuring 89-130 cm (35-51 in) in length.
Their upper half is tan or grayish-brown, with several smaller, paler spots evenly distributed on the surface. The underbelly is white. They are characterized by a row of short spines running along the back. They have a long, protruding head and pairs of thorns on the snout and between the eyes. Their upper and lower jaws have 18 to 22 teeth on an average.
The pectoral fins are relatively small with pointed tips. The males have a spiny structure on the pectoral fins, which is thought to help grab onto the females while mating.
Where do they live
Map Of The Angular Angelshark’s Habitat
Angular angelsharks are endemic to the southwestern Atlantic, specifically to the waters of Brazil, Uruguay, and Argentina. They commonly rest on or near the sandy bottom at depths between 2-265 m (6.5-870 ft).
Their primary diet is bony fishes, supplemented by crustaceans and mollusks picked off the sea bed.
Angular angelsharks follow an ovoviviparous mode of reproduction; however, only the left ovary is functional. The females migrate to shallow waters to give birth to one litter of 2-10 pups every three years. The young measure 25-30 cm (10-12 in) at birth.
They are ambush predators and lie on the ocean floor waiting for prey. When prey approaches, they snap upwards and engulf it in their mouth. They are nocturnal, hunting mostly at night.
They share many adaptations with other shark species, such as a sleek, streamlined body, a keen sense of smell and sight, and sharp teeth.
Due to their nocturnal and bottom-dwelling behavior, angular angelsharks are threatened by overfishing. They are easily caught by trawlers and gillnets and are a valuable part of the bycatch. Females are especially susceptible as they give birth in shallow waters.
The IUCN has thus classified this species as “Endangered” or “EN.”