Rusty Carpetshark, Parascyllium ferrugineum McCulloch 1911

Other Names: Rusty Carpet Shark, Rusty Cat Shark, Rusty Catshark, Rusty Shark, Spotted Shark, Tasmanian Carpet Shark, Tasmanian Carpetshark, Tasmanian Spotted Cat Shark, Tasmanian Spotted Catshark, Tasmanian Spotted Shark

Rusty Carpetshark, Parascyllium ferrugineum. Source: Rudie H. Kuiter / Aquatic Photographics. License: All rights reserved

A slender greyish-brown catshark with a pale underside, 6-7 faint slightly darker saddles along the back, the first at the gill openings, darker brown spots on the head, body and fins, including more than 6 spots on the side between the dorsal fins.
This nocturnal shark is rarely seen by divers.

Cite this page as:
Bray, D.J. 2017, Parascyllium ferrugineum in Fishes of Australia, accessed 10 Jul 2020,

Rusty Carpetshark, Parascyllium ferrugineum McCulloch 1911

More Info


Southern Australia from about Gabo Island, Victoria, to Albany, Western Australia, and around Tasmania. Inhabits depths to 150 metres, living on or near the bottom near rocky areas, river mouths, amongst macroalgae on reefs, or in seagrass beds.


Teeth slender, triangular, sometimes with low rounded cusps on either side of base; each jaw with about 5-7 functional rows of teeth. 


During summer months, females lay yellow egg cases with long tendrils. Pups are about 17 cmTL at births and males mature at 71 cmTL.


Occasionally taken and discarded bycatch of trawl and Danish seine vessels.

Species Citation

Parascyllium ferrugineum McCulloch 1911, Zool. Results. Endeavour 1(1): 7, pl. 2(2) text, fig. 2. Type  locality: off Port Phillip, VIC.


Bray, D.J. 2017


Australian Faunal Directory

Rusty Carpetshark, Parascyllium ferrugineum McCulloch 1911


Coleman, N. 1980. Australian Sea Fishes South of 30ºS. Lane Cove, NSW : Doubleday Australia Pty Ltd 309 pp.

Compagno, L.J.V. 1984. FAO Species Catalogue. Sharks of the World. An annotated and illustrated catalogue of shark species known to date. Hexanchiformes to Lamniformes. FAO Fisheries Synopsis No. 125. Rome : FAO Vol. 4(1) pp. 1-249. 

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.

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

Heupel, M.R. 2016. Parascyllium ferrugineum. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2016: e.T41842A68639939. Downloaded on 13 July 2017.

Hutchins, J.B. & Swainston, R. 1986. Sea Fishes of Southern Australia. Complete field guide for anglers and divers. Perth : Swainston Publishing 180 pp. 

Kuiter, R.H. 1993. Coastal Fishes of South-eastern Australia. Bathurst : Crawford House Press 437 pp. 

Last, P.R., Scott, E.O.G. & Talbot, F.H. 1983. Fishes of Tasmania. Hobart : Tasmanian Fisheries Development Authority 563 pp. figs. 

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. 

McCulloch, A.R. 1911. Report on the fishes obtained by the F.I.S. Endeavour on the coasts of New South Wales, Victoria, South Australia and Tasmania. Part 1. Zoological (Biological) Results. Endeavour 1(1): 1-87 figs 1-20 pls 1-16

Scott, E.O.G. 1935. Observations on some Tasmanian fishes. Part 2. Papers and Proceedings of the Royal Society of Tasmania 1934: 63-73 fig. 5 (as Parascyllium multimaculatum)

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

Stevens, J.D. 1994. Families Echinorhinidae, Squalidae, Oxynotidae, Parascyllidae, Orectolobidae. pp. 91-118 figs 28-73 in Gomon, M.F., Glover, C.J.M. & Kuiter, R.H. (eds). The Fishes of Australia's South Coast. Adelaide : State Printer 992 pp. 810 figs. 

Walker, T.I. & Gason, A.S. 2007. Shark and other chondrichthyan byproduct and bycatch estimation in the Southern and Eastern Scalefish and Shark Fishery. Final report to Fisheries and Research Development Corporation Project No. 2001/007. July 2007. vi + 182 pp. Primary Industries Research Victoria, Queenscliff, Victoria, Australia.

White, W. 2008. Shark Families Heterodontidae to Pristiophoridae. pp. 32-100 in Gomon, M.F., Bray, D.J. & Kuiter, R.H. (eds). Fishes of Australia's Southern Coast. Sydney : Reed New Holland 928 pp. 

Whitley, G.P. 1939. Taxonomic notes on sharks and rays. The Australian Zoologist 9(3): 227-262 figs 1-18 pls 20-22 

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:37013005

Conservation:IUCN Least Concern

Depth:5-150 m

Habitat:Reef associated

Max Size:80 cm TL


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CAAB distribution map