Recently described catshark in New Caledonia

The Starry catshark (Asymbolus galacticus) is a species of shark belonging to the family Scyliorhinidae found in New Caledonia. It has a variegated color pattern and prefers tropical climates. The Starry catshark is a more recently described shark by Séret, B. & Last, P.R., 2008.


Family: Scyliorhinidae – Catsharks

Genus: Asymbolus 

Species: galacticus


Phylum– Chordata

Class– Chondrichthyles


Common NameGround Sharks

Family– Scyliorhinidae

Common NameCatsharks




Average Size and Length: They have been recorded at 47.7 cm/1.6 feet.

Teeth and Jaw: The labial furrows are long. The teeth are distally pointed with 3 or 5 cusps. The median cusps much larger than the adjacent ones.

Head: The snout is narrow.

Demographic, Distribution, Habitat, Environment and Range: They can be found in the western Pacific in New Caledonia at a depth range of between 771-1,805 feet. They are considered benthopelagic, preferring tropical climates.

Aesthetic Identification: The Starry catshark is a small and slender shark. It has a distinct variegated color pattern with whiteish blotches surrounded by rusty-brown spots and blotches. There are dorsal saddles on the back, and they are faint and dusky in color. The dorsal is light brown and a bit paler on the sides. The dorsal fins are of equal size. The claspers are long and slender in adult males. The anal fin is small, much smaller than the dorsal fins.

Biology and Reproduction: Unknown but possibly oviparous.

Behavioral Traits, Sensing and Intelligence: Unknown.

Starry Catshark Future and Conservation: They are currently of least concern.

Starry Catshark Recorded Attacks on Humans: Not a threat to humans.