Nebrius ferrugineus (Tawny nurse shark)
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Nebrius ferrugineus (Tawny nurse shark) [Illustration
by Ann Hecht ©]
This large, bulky, plain brown shark has a
small mouth, nasal barbels, small comblike cutting teeth in both
jaws, and angular fins.
To 3.2 m TL.
East coast off
northern Natal and southern Mozambique; widespread in the Indian
Ocean and west-central Pacific.
Tropical coral and rocky
reefs from the intertidal to 70 m.
A sluggish shark that
rests in caves and crevices in the day and prowls reefs at night.
Uncommon in the area, possibly a summer migrant into kwaZulu. Bears
four young. Feeds on corals, crabs, lobsters, and other crustaceans,
octopus, squid, sea urchins, and small reef fish, which it sucks
into its mouth. Individuals may squirt water at anglers who catch