Shark Family Tree

Happy Chappie (Haploblepharus kistnasamyi)

Previously considered a “Natal” form of Haploblepharus edwardsii (Schinz, 1822) by Basset al. (1975) and subsequent authors, H. kistnasamyi has a colour pattern that superficially resembles, although is distinct from, that of H. edwardsii. In addition, H. kistnasamyi is distinct in having a noticeably less depressed body, which is stockier than that of H. edwardsii. This species has only been described recently (Compagno and Human 2006, Human 2006 in press).

Haploblepharus kistnasamyi is a rare shark, known only from three adult specimens (specimens tentatively identified as juveniles require confirmation), all collected from a small area, estimated to be less than 100 km², surrounding Durban, KwaZulu-Natal. It prefers shallow coastal waters, from the intertidal to 30 m depth. The apparently small population size and restricted distribution of this species makes it highly susceptible to habitat degradation, which is a major threat as intensive habitat modification and destruction is known to be occurring within its range. The species currently is known from only one location (despite adjacent waters being well-surveyed), its extent of occurrence is less than 100 km², and there is a continuing decline in the quality of its habitat, warranting an assessment of Critically Endangered B1ab(iii).

H kistnasamyi slide

Also known as:  Eastern Shyshark or Natal Shyshark
 Western Indian Ocean: South Africa (western to eastern Cape and kwaZulu-Natal).
Behaviour: Unknown
Biology:  Unknown
Diet: Unknown

The information on this page is brought to you by Sharks of the World and The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 


Ebert, D. A., Fowler, S. & Compagno, L. J. V. (2013c). Sharks of the World – A fully illustrated guide. Wild Nature Press, ISBN 978-0-9573946-0-5: 528pp.

Human, B. 2009. Haploblepharus kistnasamyi. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2009: e.T161667A5476391.


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