Speckled Carpetshark, Hemiscyllium trispeculare Richardson 1843


Other Names: Marbled Catshark, Speckled Carpet Shark, Speckled Cat Shark, Speckled Catshark, Speckled Cat-shark, Speckled Epaulette Shark

A Speckled Catshark, Hemiscyllium trispeculare, in a tide pool at Darwin, Northern Territory. Source: Michael Hammer, Fig. 45, in Allen et al. (2016) Journal of the Ocean Science Foundation 23: 51–97. License: CC by Attribution

Summary:
A catshark covered in a dense network of fine brown spots including on the snout, a large black ocellus rimmed posteriorly by several dark blotches above each pectoral fin, a short brown diagonal bar behind the spiracle, and slightly darker bands along the body and tail.

Cite this page as:
Bray, D.J. 2020, Hemiscyllium trispeculare in Fishes of Australia, accessed 01 Jul 2022, https://fishesofaustralia.net.au/home/species/3265

Speckled Carpetshark, Hemiscyllium trispeculare Richardson 1843

More Info


Distribution

Exmouth Gulf, Western Australia, to Melville Bay and Cape Arnhem, Northern Territory; also Cartier Island, Timor Sea. Elsewhere, the species occurs in the Aru Islands, Indonesia.
Inhabits trawl grounds such as Exmouth Gulf, Western Australia, usually in depths  above 20 m. Also occurs on reefs and shoals of northwestern Australia, in areas with large daily tidal fluctuations of 7–10 m in some areas. In the Darwin area, the species also occurs in shallow rock pools during low spring tides.

Features

Precaudal length 1.2–1.4 in TL, HL 6.2–8.2 in TL; head width 1.2–1.9 in HL; head depth 1.0–1.5 in head width; eye length 2.6–4.1 in snout length, eye height 1.8–3.9 in eye length; fleshy interorbital space 1.0–1.6, bony interorbital space 1.4–2.0, both in snout length; snout length 2.0–3.2, snout tip to mouth 4.4–7.1, snout tip to spiracle 1.8–2.6, snout tip to first gill slit 1.1–1.3, all in HL; distance between first and fifth gill slit 2.4–3.8 in HL; height of first gill slit 2.3–3.9 and fifth 1.8–2.8, both in snout length. 
Mouth width 1.0–1.4, nasal barbel length 3.3–7.5, maximum width of lower labial flap 3.6–5.7, length of postoral fold (upper labial furrow) 2.8–5.1, length of lower labial furrow 3.4–5.4, all in snout length. 
Snout tip to dorsal-fin origin 2.6–3.0, snout tip to pelvic-fin origin 3.1–3.6, snout to cloaca length 2.9–3.7, cloaca to anal-fin origin 2.0–2.5, cloaca to caudal-fin tip 1.4–1.5, all in TL; pectoral-fin length 1.0–1.5 in HL; pelvic-fin length 1.2–1.6 in HL; first dorsal-fin base 1.3–2.5 in HL; first dorsal-fin height 0.9–1.4 in first dorsalfin base; free margin of first dorsal fin 1.0–2.8 in first dorsal-fin height; interdorsal space 1.0–1.6 in HL; second dorsal-fin base 1.5–2.4 in HL; second dorsal-fin height 0.9–1.5 in second dorsal-fin base; free margin of second dorsal fin 1.3–2.6 in second dorsal-fin height; anal-fin base 1.0–2.2 in HL; anal-fin height 2.2–4.8 in anal-fin base; free margin of anal fin 1.5–2.2 in anal-fin height; body depth at level of anal-fin origin 2.3–4.3 in HL; subcaudal length 5.5–8.2 in TL.

Colour

Colour pattern unique - a dense covering of close-set, small, brown spots on head and most of body; about 7–8 dark-brown saddles from level of pelvic fins to tail tip, first 4 on body extending across back onto sides and consisting of large polygon-shaped dark marks separated by whitish reticulum; posterior 4 bars more-or-less solid dark-brown dorsally and more diffuse on sides, enclosing numerous small brown spots and a few larger ovate brown markings; ventral portion of side with alternating white-and-brown bars of approximately equal width; post-cephalic ocellus large and well-formed, bordered posteriorly by a dark patch comprising 1 to 3 poorly formed irregular smaller ocelli; both dorsal fins with a pair of dark-brown saddles along anterior margin and pyramid-shaped zone of dark-brown spotting at base; apex and posterior margin of fin narrowly white; pectoral and pelvic fins brown with numerous small brown spots, largest and most conspicuous on basal portion of fin, outer margin narrowly white.

Etymology

The specific name trispeculare is from the Latin specularis meaning 'to look', presumably in reference to the postcephalic ocellus bordered posteriorly by additional poorly formed smaller ocelli.

Species Citation

Hemiscyllium trispeculare Richardson 1843. Icones Piscium, or plates of rare fishes: 5, pl. 1(2). Type locality: Turtle Island, NW Australia.

Author

Bray, D.J. 2020

Resources

Atlas of Living Australia

Speckled Carpetshark, Hemiscyllium trispeculare Richardson 1843

References


Allen, G.R. 1997. Marine Fishes of Tropical Australia and South-east Asia. Perth : Western Australian Museum 292 pp. 106 pls.

Allen, G.R., Erdmann, M.V. & Dudgeon, C.L. 2013. Hemiscyllium halmahera, a new species of bamboo shark (Hemiscyllidae) from Indonesia. Aqua, International Journal of Ichthyology 19: 3-19.

Allen, G.R., Erdmann, M.V., White, W.T., Fahmi & Dudgeon, C.L. 2016. Review of the bamboo shark genus Hemiscyllium (Orectolobiformes: Hemiscyllidae). Journal of the Ocean Science Foundation 23: 51–97. PDF Open access

Allen, G.R. & Swainston, R. 1988. The Marine Fishes of North-Western Australia. A field guide for anglers and divers. Perth, WA : Western Australian Museum vi 201 pp., 70 pls. 

Blaber, S.J.M., Brewer, D.T. & Salini, J.P. 1992. A checklist of the fishes of Groote Eylandt, north-western Gulf of Carpentaria. Report 218. Hobart : CSIRO Marine Laboratories 14 pp.

Compagno, L.J.V. 1984. FAO Species Catalogue. Vol. 4. Sharks of the world. An annotated and illustrated catalogue of shark species known to date. Part 1 - Hexanchiformes to Lamniformes. FAO Fish. Synop. 125(4/1): 1-249. Rome: FAO.

Compagno, L.J.V., 2001. Sharks of the world. An annotated and illustrated catalogue of shark species known to date. Vol. 2. Bullhead, mackerel and carpet sharks (Heterodontiformes, Lamniformes and Orectolobiformes). FAO Spec. Cat. Fish. Purp. 1(2): 269 pp. Rome: FAO.

Compagno, L.J.V., Dando, M. & Fowler, S. 2005. A Field Guide to the Sharks of the World. London : Collins 368 pp.

Compagno, L.J.V. & V.H. Niem. 1998. Hemiscylliidae. Longtail carpetsharks. p. 1249-1259. In K.E. Carpenter & V.H. Niem (eds) FAO identification guide for fishery purposes. The Living Marine Resources of the Western Central Pacific. FAO, Rome.

Dudgeon, C.L., Corrigan, C., Yang, L., Allen, G.R., Erdmann, M.V., Fahmi, Sugeha, H.Y., White, W.T., Naylor, G.J.P. 2020. Walking, swimming or hitching a ride? Phylogenetics and biogeography of the walking shark genus Hemiscyllium. Marine and Freshwater Research,  https://doi.org/10.1071/MF19163

Ebert, D.A., Fowler, S. & Compagno, L. 2013. Sharks of the World. Wild Nature Press, Plymouth.

Gloerfelt-Tarp, T. & P.J. Kailola. 1984. Trawled fishes of southern Indonesia and northwestern Australia. Australian Development Assistance Bureau, Australia, Directorate General of Fishes, Indonesia, and German Agency for Technical Cooperation, Federal Republic of Germany. 407 pp.

Grant, E.M. 1975. Guide to Fishes. Brisbane : Queensland Government, Co-ordinator General’s Department 640 pp.

Heupel, M.R. 2015. Hemiscyllium trispeculare. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2015: e.T41820A68625409. http://dx.doi.org/10.2305/IUCN.UK.2015-4.RLTS.T41820A68625409.en. Downloaded on 16 November 2016.

Hutchins, J.B. 1994. A survey of the nearshore reef fish fauna of Western Australia's west and south coasts — The Leeuwin Province. Records of the Western Australian Museum, Supplement 46: 1-66 figs 1-6 

Hutchins, J.B. 2003. Checklist of marine fishes of the Dampier Archipelago, Western Australia. pp. 453-478 in Wells, F.E., Walker, D.I., & Jones, D.S. (eds). Proceedings of the Eleventh International Marine Biological Workshop: The Marine Flora and Fauna of Dampier, Western Australia. Perth : Western Australian Museum. 

Larson, H.K., Williams, R.S. & Hammer, M.P. 2013. An annotated checklist of the fishes of the Northern Territory, Australia. Zootaxa 3696(1): 1-293 

Larson, H.K. & Williams, R.S. 1997. Darwin Harbour fishes: a survey and annotated checklist. pp. 339-380 in Hanley, H.R., Caswell, G., Megirian, D. & Larson, H.K. (eds). The Marine Flora and Fauna of Darwin Harbour, Northern Territory, Australia. Proceedings of the Sixth International Marine Biology Workshop. Darwin : Museum and Art Gallery of the Northern Territory 466 pp. 

Last, P.R. & Stevens, J.D. 1994. Sharks and Rays of Australia. Canberra : CSIRO Australia 513 pp. 84 pls. 

Last, P.R. & Stevens, J.D. 2009. Sharks and Rays of Australia. Collingwood : CSIRO Publishing Australia 2, 550 pp.

Randall, J.E., G.R. Allen & R.C. Steene. 1990. Fishes of the Great Barrier Reef and Coral Sea. University of Hawaii Press, Honolulu, Hawaii. 506 pp.

Randall, J.E., Allen, G.R. & Steene, R. 1997. Fishes of the Great Barrier Reef and Coral Sea. Bathurst : Crawford House Press 557 pp. figs. 

Richardson, J. 1843. Icones Piscium, or plates of rare fishes. London : Richard & John E. Taylor 8 pp. 5 pls. 

Russell, B.C., Larson, H.K., Hutchins, J.B. & Allen, G.R. 2005. Reef fishes of the Sahul Shelf. The Beagle, Records of the Museums and Art Galleries of the Northern Territory Supplement 1 2005: 83-105

Stead, D.G. 1963. Sharks and Rays of Australian Seas. Sydney : Angus & Robertson 211 pp. 63 figs. 

Taylor, W.R. 1964. Fishes of Arnhem Land. Records of the American-Australian Scientific Expedition to Arnhem Land 4: 44-307 figs 1-68 

Whitley, G.P. 1940. The Fishes of Australia. Part 1. The sharks, rays, devil-fish, and other primitive fishes of Australia and New Zealand. Sydney : Roy. Zool. Soc. N.S.W. 280 pp. 303 figs.

Quick Facts


CAAB Code:37013015

Conservation:IUCN Least Concern

Depth:1-30 m

Habitat:Reef associated

Max Size:79 cm TL

Species Image Gallery

Species Maps

CAAB distribution map