home   about   search

biodiversity explorer

the web of life in southern Africa

Family: Odontaspididae (sand tiger sharks, raggedtooths)

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

Large bulky sharks with pointed snouts, upper precaudal pits only, and asymmetrical caudal fins without keels. 3 or 4 species, 2 in the area.

Species in seas off southern Africa

Carcharias taurus (Spotted raggedtooth)

A large, brownish, heavy-bodied shark with a short pointed snout, small eyes, protruding spikelike teeth, and small equal-sized dorsal and anal fins. 1st dorsal closer to pelvic fins than pectorals. Lighter below, often with reddish spots on sides.

Odontaspis ferox (Bumpytail raggedtooth)

A large, bulky grey shark with a long, bulbous, conical snout, moderately large eyes, protruding teeth, and 2nd dorsal and anal fins smaller than 1st dorsal. 1st dorsal fin closer to pectoral fins than pelvic fins. Grey below, sometimes with red spots on sides.

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