Environment: milieu / climate zone / depth range / distribution range
Marine; reef-associated; depth range 0 - 256 m (Ref. 5578). Subtropical; 28°S - 36°S
Southeast Atlantic: Saldanha to central Natal, South Africa.
Size / Weight / Age
Maturity: Lm ?  range ? - ? cm
Max length : 84.0 cm TL male/unsexed; (Ref. 244); 73.0 cm TL (female)
Morphology | Morphometrics
soft rays: 0. A stocky shark with long nasal barbels and a highly variable color pattern of black spots, rings and lines in horizontal rows on a grey to whitish background; white below (Ref. 5578). There are 3 different forms, the typical 'pantherinum' with lines and rosettes of spots, and two extreme forms, 'marleyi' with large dark spots (formerly considered a separate species), and 'salt and pepper' with small, densely packed black spots, intermediates between these extremes are extremely common (Ref. 5578).
Found on or near the bottom of warm-temperate waters, from the intertidal zone to 256 m (Ref. 5578). Prefers rocky reefs (Ref. 5578). Nocturnal (Ref. 244). Feeds on small bony fish, crustaceans, octopus and polychaete worms (Ref. 5578). Oviparous (Ref. 50449). Readily kept in captivity (Ref. 244).
Life cycle and mating behavior
Maturity | Reproduction | Spawning | Eggs | Fecundity | Larvae
Oviparous, produces one egg per oviduct (Ref. 5578). Embryos feed solely on yolk (Ref. 50449).
Compagno, L.J.V., D.A. Ebert and M.J. Smale, 1989. Guide to the sharks and rays of southern Africa. New Holland (Publ.) Ltd., London. 158 p. (Ref. 5578)
IUCN Red List Status (Ref. 123251)
CITES (Ref. 123416)
Threat to humans
Fisheries: subsistence fisheries; gamefish: yes
ReferencesAquacultureAquaculture profileStrainsGeneticsAllele frequenciesHeritabilityDiseasesProcessingMass conversion
Estimates based on models
Preferred temperature (Ref. 115969
): 12.4 - 22.1, mean 16.3 °C (based on 31 cells).
Phylogenetic diversity index (Ref. 82805
= 0.7500 [Uniqueness, from 0.5 = low to 2.0 = high].
Bayesian length-weight: a=0.00331 (0.00170 - 0.00646), b=3.15 (2.97 - 3.33), in cm total length, based on LWR estimates for this (Sub)family-body shape (Ref. 93245
Trophic level (Ref. 69278
): 4.1 ±0.57 se; based on food items.
Resilience (Ref. 120179
): Low, minimum population doubling time 4.5 - 14 years (Fec assumed to be <100).
Vulnerability (Ref. 59153
): High vulnerability (57 of 100) .