The gray smooth-hound (Mustelus californicus) is a small, brown-grey shark with big eyes and a pointed snout. These sharks prefer the coastal waters of the eastern Pacific Ocean and are usually observed in bays and along rocky shores, sometimes schooling with leopard sharks (Triakis semifasciata).
The mid-continental slope in the Great Australian Bight seems to be home to many animals, including the blotched skate (Notoraja sticta)! Known only from a few specimens, much is unknown (like diet and reproduction method). However, that doesn’t take away from how pretty these animals are.
The Coffin ray (Hypnos monopterygius) is a small ray with a mighty large disc. In fact, it’s pelvic fins almost form another, smaller circular disc which means… to be honest, I was going to make some kind of geeky revelation then realized I had nothing so let’s just say they’re a cool-looking animal. They have small, similar-sized dorsal fins but the coolest thing about these animals reveals itself when they’re dead: they tend to look more “coffin-like” after they’ve passed, which may be why the common name is what it is. If not, someone should look into this.
TFUI Founder Melissa C. Marquez is author of all animal bios and "Behind the Fins" segments.
SEE MELISSA'S TEDx TALK HERE:
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