Small shark that may reach extremely deep depths in the Atlantic Ocean

The Broadband lanternshark, or sometimes called the Broadbanded lanternshark (Etmopterus gracilispinis) is a shark belonging to the family Etmopteridae found in the western and possibly the southeast Atlantic. It is a small shark with the longest recorded being 1.1 foot long.


Family: Etmopteridae – Lantern Sharks

Genus: Etmopterus 

Species: gracilispinis


Phylum– Chordata

Class– Chondrichthyles



Common NameDogfish Sharks

Family– Etmopteridae

Common NameLantern Sharks




Average Size and Length: Mature males have been measured at 26 cm/10.2 inches. Mature females have been measured at 30 cm or 1 foot. The maximum recorded length has been recorded at 33 cm or 1.1 feet.

Teeth and Jaw: The teeth in the upper jaw differ from the teeth in the lower jaw. The upper teeth are smaller and narrower, and come to more of a sharp point. The teeth on the bottom jaw are broader and wider.

Denticles: There are no regular rows of lateral trunk dermal denticles. They are small and conical.

Tail: It has a short, slender tail.

Demographic, Distribution, Habitat, Environment and Range: The Broadband lanternshark can be found in the west Atlantic from the USA to Argentina. They can also be found in the western Indian Ocean in South Africa possibly to the southeast Atlantic. They are found on the outer continental shelves and the upper and middle slopes on or near the bottom between 328-3,281 feet. They are considered epipelagic and mesopelagic at 230-1,575 feet over water that is 7,350 feet deep off of Argentina.

Aesthetic Identification: The Broadband lanternshark is a small, stout lanternshark. It has a blackish-brown body that transitions fully to black below. There is an inconspicuous broad, elongated black mark running above and behind the pelvic fins. There are additional elongated black marks at the caudal fin base along the axis. The gill slits are short. The first dorsal fin is well behind the pectoral rear tips. The second dorsal fin is about twice the area of the first dorsal fin.

Biology and Reproduction: Unknown but presumably ovoviviparous.

Behavioral Traits, Sensing and Intelligence: Unknown.

Broadband Lanternshark Future and Conservation: They are not evaluated.

Broadband Lanternshark Recorded Attacks on Humans: Not a threat to humans.