the Legacy continues…………………….
Gregory R. Mann, Ph.D. {ret.}

Blind Shark

“Brachaelurus waddi”

The common name of this species arose from its behavior of closing its eyes when landed by anglers. The Blind Shark lives in shallow coastal waters and feeds at night on invertebrates and small fishes. The Blind Shark has a slightly flattened head, small eyes and a nasal barbel projecting from both nostrils. It has 2 dorsal fins that are close together and located well back on the body. The small anal fin is located just before the long caudal fin. The species is brown to black on top and yellowish below. It often has light spots and about 11 dark saddles across the back.

The Blind Shark grows to 1.2 meters in length. It lives from southern Queensland to southern New South Wales in shallow coastal waters. The Blind Shark is lecithotrophic viviparous. The eggs are carried inside the mother’s body and the embryos develop there until they are ready to hatch. Rather than providing nutrients to their babies through a placenta like mammals do, this system utilizes yolk sacs attached to the baby. These sharks like to live near rocky, high-intensity coastlines. They have the ability to survive for up to 18 hours outside of the water, allowing them to endure if stranded in a shallow tide pool until the high tide comes back in to rescue it. Juveniles are often seen in high-energy surge zones, whereas adults are usually seen during the day in caves and under ledges. It occurs in depths ranging from the inter-tidal zone down to 140 meters. The Blind Shark feeds at night on invertebrates and small fishes and is a harmless species.

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