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Gray [J. E.]
Family HEXANCHIDAE, Cow sharks by David A Ebert - in 'Coastal Fishes of the Western Indian Ocean'. Adapted for FishWisePro by Dennis Polack. Medium- to very large-sized (~1.4–5 m TL), elongated, moderately slender to stout cylindrical body and flattened head; snout moderately long, pointed to broadly rounded. Six or 7 paired gill slits. Eyes about opposite symphyses of mouth. Mouth subterminal; teeth dissimilar in upper and lower jaws: anterolateral teeth in lower jaw much larger, compressed and comb-like, with more cusplets than teeth in upper jaw, and posterior teeth smaller, granular. One spineless dorsal fin, relatively high, angular, short; its insertion well before upper caudal origin by at least length of dorsal-fin base. Pectoral fins angular, larger than pelvic fins. Pelvic-fin anterior margin nearly straight and apex narrowly rounded. Anal fin narrow-based and angular, its insertion well anterior to lower caudal origin. Peduncle moderately long and cylindrical. Caudal fin with well-developed subterminal notch, and lower lobe weak to moderately developed. No longitudinal keels on abdomen. Reproductive mode yolksac viviparity. Mostly deepwater inhabitants of outer continental shelf and upper slope, insular shelves and slopes, and submarine canyons, to at least 2 500 m deep, and found near bottom or well above it; however, some species also occur in shallow bays, close inshore and near surface. Worldwide in boreal and cold-temperate to tropical seas. Three genera and 4 species, all in WIO.
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