Cirrhigaleus Tanaka,

William T. White, Peter R. Last & John D. Stevens, 2007, Cirrhigaleus australis n. sp., a new Mandarin dogfish (Squaliformes: Squalidae) from the south-west Pacific., Zootaxa 1560, pp. 19-30: 19

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Cirrhigaleus Tanaka


[[ Genus Cirrhigaleus Tanaka  ZBK  ]]

The genus Cirrhigaleus  ZBK  was proposed as a monotypic genus by Tanaka (1912) for a new dogfish, C. barbifer  ZBK  , from Japan. Soon after, Herre (1935) described another Mandarin dogfish Phaenopogon barbulifer  ZBK  , also based on Japanese material. Herre had overlooked Tanaka’s description but immediately synonymised his species with C. barbifer  ZBK  once he realised this oversight (Herre, 1936). Cirrhigaleus  ZBK  was synonymised with Squalus  ZBK  by Garman (1913), but was reinstated as a valid genus by Bigelow & Schroeder (1948, 1957). Cirrhigaleus  ZBK  is distinguishable from members of the closely related genus Squalus  ZBK  by its extremely elongated nasal barbels, similar dorsal fins, and absence of precaudal pits.

In 1973, Merrett described another distinctive dogfish, Squalus asper  ZBK  , from Aldabra in the western Indian Ocean. This species differed from other Squalus  ZBK  species in its possession of large dorsal fins of similar size, weak or absent precaudal pits, and a very short, broad head. Thus, at this stage, the only characteristic distinguishing Cirrhigaleus  ZBK  and Squalus  ZBK  was the extremely long nasal barbels of the former species. Although Bass et al. (1976) synonymised Cirrhigaleus  ZBK  with Squalus  ZBK  , Bass (1979) and Compagno (1984) retained Squalus asper  ZBK  and Cirrhigaleus barbifer  ZBK  in their respective genera, but noted their similarity. Cladistic analysis by Shirai(1992) reassigned Squalus asper  ZBK  in Cirrhigaleus  ZBK  , based largely on the similarity of their chondrocrania. Molecular studies of the family Squalidae may be required to assess the validity of this decision.

Cirrhigaleus barbifer  ZBK  is thought to have a sporadic distribution in the Indo -West Pacific, from southeastern Japan (Tanaka, 1912; Nakabo, 2002), Taiwan (Shen, 1993), Bali and Lombok in Indonesia (White et al. 2006), Torres Islands in Vanuatu (Fourmanoir & Rivaton, 1979), southeastern Australia (Bass, 1979), and New Zealand (Garrick & Paul, 1971; Paulin et al., 1989). However, recent examination of Cirrhigaleus  ZBK  specimens from Australia and Indonesia revealed that there are at least two clearly separable species involved. This paper provides a description of the new Cirrhigaleus  ZBK  species from Australia and provides a comparison with Indonesian and Japanese specimens.