Papuan Epaulette Shark, Hemiscyllium hallstromi Whitleyi 1967

Other Names: Brownbanded Bambooshark

A Papuan Epaulette Shark, Hemiscyllium hallstromi, at Loloata Island, Bootless Bay, near Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea. Source: Gerald R. Allen, Fig. 18, in Allen et al. (2016) Journal of the Ocean Science Foundation 23: 51–97. License: CC by Attribution

A pale reddish-brown epaulette shark with relatively large widely-spaced brown spots (often with whitish margins) on the head, body and tail, a large dark ocellated spot surrounded by smaller dark spots on each side behind the head, and no dark spots on the head in front of and below the eyes.

Cite this page as:
Bray, D.J. 2020, Hemiscyllium hallstromi in Fishes of Australia, accessed 01 Jul 2022,

Papuan Epaulette Shark, Hemiscyllium hallstromi Whitleyi 1967

More Info


Known mostly from the vicinity of Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea and the Torres Strait region between the tip of Cape York Peninsula, Queensland, Australia and Papua New Guinea. Records from the Torres Strait are primarily from Mer (Murray) Island, about 125 km SE of the Papua New Guinea mainland. The species has also been recorded from Jervis Reef near Badu Island, approximately 90 km N of the tip of Cape York Peninsula.
Inhabits shallow, coastal areas in seagrass beds and occasionally on rocky and coral outcrops.


Body & tail slender, tapering posteriorly; snout rounded anteriorly, nostrils terminal with small nasal barbels; interdorsal space relatively long, much greater in length than forst-dorsal-fin base, ~12.1% TL; snout-vent length ~30.1% TL.
Dorsal fins relatively large and angular, about equal in size; first dorsal fin hieght 7% TL; second drosal fin height 7.8% TL; caudal fin with a pronounced subterminal notch but without a ventral lobe.


The species was named in honour of Edward Hallstrom, a former Director of the Taronga Zoological Park in Sydney, Australia.

Species Citation

Hemiscyllium hallstromi Whitley 1967, Aust. Zool. 14(2): 178. Type locality: near Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea (lectotype). 


Bray, D.J. 2020


Atlas of Living Australia

Papuan Epaulette Shark, Hemiscyllium hallstromi Whitleyi 1967


Allen, G.R. Erdmann, M.V. 2008. Two new species of bamboo sharks (Orectolobiformes: Hemiscyllidae) from Western New Guinea. aqua: International Journal of Ichthyology 13(3-4): 93-108.

Allen, G.R. & Erdmann, M.V. 2012. Reef fishes of the East Indies. Perth : Tropical Reef Research 3 vols, 1260 pp.

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

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. & Niem, V.H. 1998. Families Squatinidae, Heterodontidae, Parascylliidae, Brachaeluridae, Orectolobidae, Hemiscylliidae. pp. 1235-1259 in Carpenter, K.E. & Niem, V.H. (eds). The Living Marine Resources of the Western Central Pacific. FAO Species Identification Guide for Fisheries Purposes. Rome : FAO Vol. 2 687-1396 pp.

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 HemiscylliumMarine and Freshwater Research,

Dudgeon, C.L., Heupel, M.R., Kyne, P.M. & Allen, G. 2016. Hemiscyllium hallstromi . The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2016: e.T41875A70709453. Downloaded on 28 January 2020.

Gloerfelt-Tarp, T. & Kailola, P.J. 1984. Trawled Fishes of Southern Indonesia and Northwest Australia. Jakarta : Dir. Gen. Fish. (Indonesia), German Tech. Coop., Aust. Dev. Ass. Bur. 406 pp.

Whitley, G.P. 1967. Sharks of the Australasian region. The Australian Zoologist 14(2): 173-188 fig. 1 pl. 4

Quick Facts

CAAB Code:37013024

Conservation:IUCN Vulnerable

Depth:3-30 m

Habitat:Reef associated

Max Size:77 cm TL

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CAAB distribution map