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Elasmobranchii

(Subclass)

Overview

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Photos

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Taxonomy

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The Subclass Elasmobranchii is a member of the Class Chondrichthyes. Here is the complete "parentage" of Elasmobranchii:

The Subclass Elasmobranchii is further organized into finer groupings including:

Families

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Alopiidae

Thresher sharks are large lamniform sharks of the family Alopiidae. Found in all temperate and tropical oceans of the world, the family contains three species all within the genus Alopias. [more]

Anacanthobatidae

The smooth skates or leg skates are the sole genus, Anacanthobatis, of the skate, family Anacanthobatidae. It has ten described species. [more]

Brachaeluridae

The Brachaeluridae, or blind sharks, are a small family of sharks in the order Orectolobiformes. There are only two species of blind shark, both of which are native to shallow coastal waters up to 110 metres (360 ft) depth, off the eastern coast of Australia. [more]

Carcharhinidae

Requiem sharks are a family, Carcharhinidae, of sharks in the order Carcharhiniformes, containing migratory, live-bearing sharks of warm seas (sometimes of brackish or fresh water) such as the tiger shark, the blue shark, the bull shark, and the milk shark. [more]

Centrophoridae

Centrophoridae are a family of squaliform sharks. The family contains just two genera and approximately 15 species. They are sometimes called gulper sharks but this is also the name of a specific species in the family, Centrophorus granulosus. [more]

Cetorhinidae

The basking shark (Cetorhinus maximus) is the second largest living fish, after the whale shark. It is a cosmopolitan migratory species, found in all the world's temperate oceans. It is a slow moving and generally harmless filter feeder and has anatomical adaptations to filter feeding, such as a greatly enlarged mouth and highly developed gill rakers. The shape of its snout is conical and the gill slits extend around the top and bottom of its head. The gill rakers are dark and bristle-like and are used to catch plankton as water filters through the mouth and over the gills. The basking shark is usually grayish-brown in color and often seems to have a mottled appearance. The caudal (tail) fin has a strong lateral keel and a crescent shape. The teeth of the basking shark are very small and numerous and often number one hundred per row. The teeth themselves have a single conical cusp, are curved backwards and are the same on both the upper and lower jaws. [more]

Chlamydoselachidae

Chlamydoselachus is a genus of sharks and the sole extant member of the family Chlamydoselachidae, in the order Hexanchiformes. It contains two extant and several extinct species. [more]

Cladoselachidae

Cladoselachidae is an extinct family of cartilaginous fishes and among the earliest predecessors of modern sharks. They are the only members of the order Cladoselachiformes and were characterized by having an elongated body with a spine in each of the two dorsal fins. [more]

Dalatiidae

Dalatiidae is a family of sharks in the order Squaliformes, commonly known as kitefin sharks (which also refers specifically to the species Dalatias licha). Members of this family are small, under 2 m (6.6 ft) long, and are found worldwide. They have cigar-shaped bodies with narrow heads and rounded snouts. Several species have specialized bioluminescent organs. [more]

Dasyatidae

The whiptail stingrays are a family, Dasyatidae, of rays in the order Myliobatiformes. They are found worldwide in tropical to temperate marine waters, and a number of species have also penetrated into fresh water in North America, Africa, Asia, and Australia. Members of this family have flattened pectoral fin discs that range from oval to diamond-like in shape. Their common name comes from their whip-like tails, which are much longer than the disc and lack dorsal and caudal fins. All whiptail stingrays, except the porcupine ray (Urogymnus asperrimus), have one or more venomous stings near the base of the tail, which is used in defense. They range in size from 18 cm (7.1 in) to almost 2 m (6.6 ft) across. [more]

Debeeriidae

[more]

Distobatidae

[more]

Echinorhinidae

Echinorhinus is a genus of squaliform sharks, the only extant genus in the family Echinorhinidae. The name is from Greek echinos meaning "spiny" and rhinos meaning "nose". Both species are uncommon, little known sharks. They are found worldwide in cold temperate to tropical seas down to 900 metres (3,000 ft) depth. [more]

Falcatidae

[more]

Ginglymostomatidae

Ginglymostomatidae is a cosmopolitan family of carpet sharks, containing the three monotypic genera of nurse sharks. Common in shallow, tropical and subtropical waters, these sharks are sluggish and docile bottom-dwellers. Nurse sharks typically attack humans only if directly threatened. [more]

Gregoriidae

[more]

Gymnuridae

The butterfly rays are a group of rays forming the genus Gymnura and the family Gymnuridae. They are found in warm oceans worldwide, and occasionally in estuaries. [more]

Hemigaleidae

The weasel sharks are a family, Hemigaleidae, of ground sharks found from the eastern Atlantic Ocean to the continental Indo-Pacific. They are found in shallow coastal waters to a depth of 100 m (330 ft). [more]

Hemiscylliidae

Hemiscylliidae is a family of sharks in the order Orectolobiformes, commonly known as longtail carpet sharks or bamboo sharks. They are found in shallow waters of the tropical Indo-Pacific. [more]

Heterodontidae

The bullhead sharks are a small order (Heterodontiformes) of basal modern sharks (Neoselachii). There are nine living species in a single genus, Heterodontus, in the family Heterodontidae. All are relatively small, with the largest species being just 150 centimetres (59 in) in adult length. They are bottom feeders in tropical and subtropical waters. [more]

Hexanchidae

Cow sharks, or the Hexanchidae, are a family of sharks characterized by an additional pair or pairs of gill slits. There are currently known to be four species in three genera, Heptranchias, Hexanchus and Notorynchus,. [more]

Hexatrygonidae

The sixgill stingray, Hexatrygon bickelli, is an unusual species of deep-sea ray. It is distinguished by its long, soft snout and six pairs of gill slits (all other rays have five). It is the sole member of the genus Hexatrygon and the family Hexatrygonidae. Although several species of Hexatrygon have been described historically, it is now believed that they may represent variations in a single, widespread species. [more]

Hybodontidae

Hybodontidae is an extinct family of sharks, first appearing in the Mississippian period, and disappearing during the Late Cretaceous. [more]

Hypsobatidae

[more]

Lamnidae

Lamnidae is a family of sharks, commonly known as mackerel sharks or white sharks. They are large, fast-swimming sharks, found in oceans worldwide. [more]

Leptochariidae

The barbeled houndshark (Leptocharias smithii) is a species of ground shark and the only member of the family Leptochariidae. This demersal species is found in the coastal waters of the eastern Atlantic Ocean from Mauritania to Angola, at depths of 10?75 m (33?246 ft). It favors muddy habitats, particularly around river mouths. The barbeled houndshark is characterized by a very slender body, nasal barbels, long furrows at the corners of the mouth, and sexually dimorphic teeth. Its maximum known length is 82 cm (32 in). [more]

Megachasmidae

The megamouth shark, Megachasma pelagios, is an extremely rare species of deepwater shark. Since its discovery in 1976, only a few megamouth sharks have been seen, with 54 specimens known to have been caught or sighted as of 2012, including three recordings on film. Like the basking shark and whale shark, it is a filter feeder, and swims with its enormous mouth wide open, filtering water for plankton and jellyfish. It is distinctive for its large head with rubbery lips. It is so unlike any other type of shark that it is classified in its own family Megachasmidae, though it has been suggested that it may belong in the family Cetorhinidae of which the basking shark is currently the sole member. [more]

Mitsukurinidae

Mitsukurinidae, also called goblin sharks is a family of sharks with one living genus, Mitsukurina, and three extinct genera: Anomotodon, and Scapanorhynchus, though some taxonomists consider Scapanorhynchus to be a synonym of Mitsukurina. The only known living species is the goblin shark, Mitsukurina owstoni. [more]

Myliobatidae

The eagle rays are a group of cartilaginous fishes in the family Myliobatidae, consisting mostly of large species living in the open ocean rather than on the sea bottom. [more]

Narcinidae

The numbfishes are a group of electric rays (order Torpediniformes) in the family Narcinidae. They are bottom-dwelling cartilaginous fishes with large, rounded pectoral fin discs and long tails. They can produce an electric discharge for defense, from which their scientific name is derived (Greek narke, meaning "paralysis"). [more]

Odontaspididae

Sand sharks, also known as sand tiger sharks or ragged tooth sharks, are mackerel sharks of the family Odontaspididae. They are found worldwide in temperate and tropical waters. There are four species in two genera. [more]

Orectolobidae

Wobbegong is the common name given to the 12 species of carpet sharks in the family Orectolobidae. They are found in shallow temperate and tropical waters of the western Pacific Ocean and eastern Indian Ocean, chiefly around Australia and Indonesia, although one species (the Japanese wobbegong, Orectolobus japonicus) occurs as far north as Japan. The word wobbegong is believed to come from an Australian Aboriginal language, meaning "shaggy beard", referring to the growths around the mouth of the shark of the western Pacific. [more]

Parascylliidae

The Parascylliidae, or collared carpet sharks are a family of sharks. They are only found in shallow waters of the western Pacific. [more]

Plesiobatidae

The deepwater stingray or giant stingaree (Plesiobatis daviesi) is a species of stingray and the sole member of the family Plesiobatidae. It is widely distributed in the Indo-Pacific, typically over fine sediments on the upper continental slope at depths of 275?680 m (900?2,230 ft). This species reaches 2.7 m (8.9 ft) in length and 1.5 m (4.9 ft) in width. It has an oval pectoral fin disc with a long, flexible, broad-angled snout. Most of the entire latter half of its tail supports a distinctively long, slender, leaf-shaped caudal fin. Its coloration is dark above and white below, and its skin is almost completely covered by tiny dermal denticles. [more]

Potamotrygonidae

River stingrays are Neotropical freshwater fishes of the Potamotrygonidae family (order Myliobatiformes). [more]

Pristidae

Sawfish, also known as the Carpenter Shark, are a family of rays, characterized by a long, toothy nose extension snout. Several species can grow to approximately 7 metres or 23 feet. The family as a whole is largely unknown and little studied. They are members of the sole living family Pristidae within the order Pristiformes, from the Ancient Greek pristes (p??st??) meaning "a sawyer" or "a saw". [more]

Pristiophoridae

The sawsharks or saw sharks are an order (Pristiophoriformes) of sharks bearing long blade-like snouts edged with teeth, which they use to slash and disable their prey. Most occur in waters from South Africa to Australia and Japan, at depths of 40 metres (130 ft) and below; in 1960 the Bahamas sawshark was discovered in the deeper waters (640 m to 915 m) of the northwestern Caribbean. [more]

Proscylliidae

The finback catsharks are a small family, Proscylliidae, of ground sharks. [more]

Pseudocarchariidae

The crocodile shark (Pseudocarcharias kamoharai) is a species of mackerel shark and the only member of the family Pseudocarchariidae. A specialized inhabitant of the mesopelagic zone, the crocodile shark can be found worldwide in tropical waters from the surface to a depth of 590 m (1,940 ft). It performs a diel vertical migration, staying below a depth of 200 m (660 ft) during the day and ascending into shallower water at night to feed. Typically measuring only 1 m (3.3 ft) in length, the crocodile shark is the smallest living mackerel shark. It can be distinguished by its elongated cigar-shaped body, extremely large eyes, and relatively small fins. [more]

Pseudotriakidae

Pseudotriakidae is a small family of ground sharks, order Carcharhiniformes, containing the false catsharks and gollumsharks. It contains the only ground shark species that exhibit intrauterine oophagy, in which developing fetuses are nourished by eggs produced by their mother. [more]

Rajidae

Skates are cartilaginous fish belonging to the family Rajidae in the superorder Batoidea of rays. There are more than 200 described species in 27 genera. There are two subfamilies, Rajinae (hardnose skates) and Arhynchobatinae (softnose skates). [more]

Rhincodontidae

The whale shark, Rhincodon typus, is a slow-moving filter feeding shark and the largest extant fish species. The largest confirmed individual had a length of 12.65 metres (41.50 ft) and a weight of more than 21.5 tonnes (47,000 lb), and there are unconfirmed reports of considerably larger whale sharks. This distinctively-marked fish is the only member of its genus Rhincodon and its family, Rhincodontidae (called Rhiniodon and Rhinodontidae before 1984), which belongs to the subclass Elasmobranchii in the class Chondrichthyes. The species originated about 60 million years ago. [more]

Rhinobatidae

The guitarfish are a family, Rhinobatidae, of rays. The guitarfish are known for an elongated body with a flattened head and trunk and small ray like wings. The combined range of the various species is tropical, subtropical and temperate waters worldwide. They often travel in large schools. [more]

Scyliorhinidae

Catsharks are ground sharks of the family Scyliorhinidae, with over 150 known species. While they are generally known as catsharks, many species are commonly called dogfish. [more]

Sphyrnidae

The hammerhead sharks are a group of sharks in the family Sphyrnidae, so named for the unusual and distinctive structure of their heads, which are flattened and laterally extended into a "hammer" shape called a "cephalofoil". Most hammerhead species are placed in the genus Sphyrna while the winghead shark is placed in its own genus, Eusphyra. Many, not necessarily mutually exclusive, functions have been proposed for the cephalofoil, including sensory reception, maneuvering, and prey manipulation. Hammerheads are found worldwide in warmer waters along coastlines and continental shelves. Unlike most sharks, hammerheads usually swim in schools during the day, becoming solitary hunters at night. Some of these schools can be found near Malpelo Island in Colombia, Cocos Island, off Costa Rica, and near Molokai Island, in Hawaii. Large schools are also seen in southern and eastern Africa. [more]

Squalidae

Squalidae is the family of dogfish sharks. They are found in the Atlantic, Pacific, and Indian oceans, from tropical equatorial climates to the Arctic and Antarctic. [more]

Squatinactidae

[more]

Squatinidae

The angel sharks are an unusual genus of sharks with flattened bodies and broad pectoral fins that give them a strong resemblance to rays. The more than 16 known species are in the genus Squatina, the only genus in its family, Squatinidae, and order Squatiniformes. They occur worldwide in temperate and tropical seas. Most species inhabit shallow temperate or tropical seas, but one species inhabits deeper water, down to 1,300 metres (4,300 ft). [more]

Stegostomatidae

The zebra shark (Stegostoma fasciatum or varium) is a species of carpet shark and the sole member of the family Stegostomatidae. It is found throughout the tropical Indo-Pacific, frequenting coral reefs and sandy flats to a depth of 62 m (210 ft). Adult zebra sharks are distinctive in appearance, with five longitudinal ridges on a cylindrical body, a low caudal fin comprising nearly half the total length, and a pattern of dark spots on a pale background. Young zebra sharks under 50?90 cm (20?35 in) long have a completely different pattern, consisting of light vertical stripes on a brown background, and lack the ridges. This species attains a length of 2.5 m (8.2 ft). [more]

Stethacanthidae

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Symmoriidae

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Torpedinidae

Torpedo is a genus of rays, commonly known as electric rays, torpedo rays, or torpedoes. It is the sole genus of the family Torpedinidae. They are slow-moving bottom-dwellers capable of generating electricity as a defense and feeding mechanism. There are between fifteen and twenty-two extant species. [more]

Triakidae

Houndsharks are a family, Triakidae, of ground sharks, consisting of about 40 species in 9 genera. In some classifications, the family is split into two sub-families, with Mustelus, Scylliogaleus, and Triakis in sub-family Triakinae, and the remaining genera in sub-family . [more]

Urolophidae

Urolophidae is a family of rays in the order Myliobatiformes, commonly known as stingarees or round stingrays; this family formerly included the genera Urobatis and Urotrygon of the Americas, which are presently recognized as forming their own family Urotrygonidae. Stingarees are found in the Indo-Pacific region, with the greatest diversity off Australia. They are sluggish, bottom-dwelling fish that have been recorded from shallow waters close to shore to deep waters over the upper continental slope. Measuring between 15?80 cm (5.9?31 in) long, these rays have oval to diamond-shaped pectoral fin discs and relatively short tails that terminate in leaf-shaped caudal fins, and may also have small dorsal fins and lateral skin folds. Most are smooth-skinned, and some have ornate dorsal color patterns. [more]

At least 40 species and subspecies belong to the Family Urolophidae.

More info about the Family Urolophidae may be found here.

Sources

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Last Revised: August 25, 2014
2014/08/25 13:31:38