Common name: Bullhead Sharks, Horn Sharks
A small order of primitive and distinctive bottom-dwelling sharks with a single family, the Heterodontidae.

Bullhead or horn sharks have bony crests or ridges above the eyes, a small terminal mouth and two dorsal fins, each preceded by a large, stout spine. The sharp grasping teeth at the front of the jaws, and the crushing molars at the rear are ideal for feeding on hard-shelled invertebrates. Females lay spiral-shaped egg cases.

The heterodontiform fossil record dates back to the Early Jurassic.
Author: Dianne J. Bray

Cite this page as:
Dianne J. Bray, Bullhead Sharks, HETERODONTIFORMES in Fishes of Australia, accessed 18 Apr 2021,

Order References

Compagno, L.J.V. 2001. Sharks of the World. An annotated and illustrated catalogue of shark species known to date. Bullhead, mackerel and carpet sharks (Heterodontiformes, Lamniformes and Orectolobiformes). Rome : FAO, FAO Species Catalogue for Fisheries Purposes No. 1 Vol. 2 269 pp.