Cephaloscyllium sarawakense Yano, Ahmad & Gambang, 2005
Sarawak pygmy swell shark
photo by Ebert, D.A.

Family:  Scyliorhinidae (Cat sharks), subfamily: Scyliorhininae
Max. size:  39.7 cm TL (male/unsexed); 44.1 cm TL (female)
Environment:  benthopelagic; marine; depth range 100 - 200 m
Distribution:  Pacific Ocean: South China Sea (western south Taiwan, Hong Kong, Gulf of Tongking, Vietnam, Malaysia).
Diagnosis:  This small-sized shark is distinguished by the following characters: adults with two distinct and wide brown saddle blotches before first dorsal fin while juveniles with 3; first saddle immediately behind eye, second over posterior 1/3 of base and inner margin of pectoral fin, the third a little before first dorsal fin, which fades with growth; dark lateral circular to oblong blotches above gill openings and on lateral side of trunk; young individuals with many polka dots on body and fins; anterior nasal flap triangular without an elongate flap (Ref. 98601). Description: body comparatively slender with a short head; snout moderately flattened, short and broadly rounded; no labial furrows; small teeth in both jaws; an inflatable stomach for water or air; dorsal caudal fin without ridge of enlarged denticles; first dorsal fin origin about opposite origin of pelvic fin or anterior to it; distance between snout tip and first dorsal fin origin 44-48% of TL; from snout tip to pectoral fin origin < 20% of TL; mouth width 42-50% of HL; first dorsal fin larger than the second one; pectoral fins relatively large and broad. Field characters include, anterior nasal flaps not overlapping mouth posteriorly; adult color pattern of a few broad dark saddles on back and with vertical elongate dark blotch on center of body side between pectoral and pelvic fins, no white spots (Ref. 75538).
Biology:  All specimens were collected by trawl nets near the edge of the continental shelf (Ref. 75538).
IUCN Red List Status: Critically Endangered (CR); Date assessed: 20 May 2020 (A2d) Ref. (126983)
Threat to humans:  harmless

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