Scroll Top

Rough Sharks


Average Size Range – 1 to 5ft

Most species of Rough Shark contain a photophore (a glandular organ that appears as luminous spots.) They have long flat bodies with two large dorsal fins, a sharp spine and rough prickly skin. They range from greyish to dark brown.

They can be found in the deep waters of the Atlantic and Western Pacific Oceans around 1000-2300ft.

Their diet is not well documented, but it is believed they eat sea worms and small bottom dwelling invertebrates.

Little is known about this family of sharks, but it is known that they are quite slow swimmers and they pose little to no threat to humans.

There are five known living species of Rough Shark:

  • Oxynotus bruniensis (Prickly Dogfish)
  • Oxynotus caribbaeus (Caribbean Roughshark)
  • Oxynotus centrina (Angular Roughshark)
  • Oxynotus japonicus (Japanese Roughshark)
  • Oxynotus paradoxus (Sailfin Roughshark)

There isn’t much concern over the vulnerability of any species within this family of sharks.

Want to learn more about each individual species?

"File:Oxynotus paradoxus.jpg" by This illustration was made by Citron You must credit this : Citron / CC-BY-SA-3.0 is licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0
Caribbean Rough shark Featured
By Nakedape13 - Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0,
By New Zealand-American Submarine Ring of Fire 2005 Exploration, NOAA Vents Program -, Public Domain,
Angular Rough shark Gallery
By Gervais et Boulart - Les poissons Gervais, H., Public Domain,