Marine and Freshwater Research Marine and Freshwater Research Society
Advances in the aquatic sciences

Distribution, population structure and biological aspects of Squalus spp. (Chondrichthyes : Squaliformes) from New South Wales and adjacent Australian waters

Ken J. Graham
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- Author Affiliations

NSW Department of Primary Industries, Cronulla Fisheries Research Centre, PO Box 21, Cronulla, NSW 2230, Australia. Email:

Marine and Freshwater Research 56(4) 405-416
Submitted: 19 November 2004  Accepted: 31 March 2005   Published: 27 June 2005


Four species of Squalus dogsharks, S. megalops, S. cf. mitsukurii, Squalus sp. B and Squalus sp. F inhabit shelf and upper-slope depths off New South Wales and adjacent Australian states. During fishery surveys between 1976 and 2001, distributional, size composition and reproductive data were collected for these species. Adult size classes dominated catches and, for S. megalops, heavily biased sex ratios were observed. Although no female data were available for the rarely caught Squalus sp. B, reproduction in the other three species was found to be continuous with no evidence of seasonality. Fecundity was 1–3 embryos for S. megalops, 1–5 for Squalus sp. F and 4–10 for S. cf. mitsukurii. All species are commercially exploited, contributing to the mixed species demersal trawl fishery off New South Wales. Stocks of some species are greatly depleted on the main trawling grounds, but the overall distributions of all species include large areas of lightly exploited habitat.

Extra keywords: dogfish, fishery management, length–frequency, reproduction, Squalidae.


All associated with FRV Kapala are thanked for their cooperation and assistance over many years. John Stevens and Ross Daley are also thanked for their contributions to this and associated studies. Michael Lowry and Dennis Reid gave helpful advice with data analyses. Sarah Irvine, Kevin Rowling, Steve Kennelly and two anonymous referees made many constructive suggestions to improve the manuscript. Data from Bermagui and Portland were recorded during the FRDC funded project 98/204.


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