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the web of life in southern Africa

Squatiniformes (angel sharks)

Life > Eukaryotes > Opisthokonta > Metazoa (animals) > Bilateria > Deuterostomia > Chordata > Craniata > Vertebrata (vertebrates)  > Gnathostomata (jawed vertebrates) > Chondrichthyes > Elasmobranchii > Squalomorphii 

These unmistakable raylike sharks have a short, truncated snout, a terminal mouth with small needle-sharp teeth, no anal fin and 2 spineless dorsal fins behind the pelvic fins. 1 family, Squatinidae, with over 13 species, 2 in the area.

Species found in Southern Africa

Squatina aculeata (Sawback angelshark)


Squatina africana (African angelshark)

Squatina oculata (Smoothback angelshark)


Text by Leonard J.V. Compagno, David A. Ebert and Malcolm J. Smale