Species Profile Sections: Info, Discussions & Photos
Info  Quick Care, Species Info, Aquarium Care & Photos
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Description
Blind Shark
(Brachaelurus waddi)
Quick Care FactsCare Level: Expert
Temperament: Aggressive
Maximum Size: 38"
Minimum Tank Size: 360 gallons
Water Conditions: 65-75° F, dKH 8-12, pH 8.1-8.4, sg 1.020-1.025
Diet: Carnivore
Origin: Australia
Family: Brachaeluridae
Species: Sharks
Aquarium Type: Predatory
Species Information
Blind Sharks (Brachaelurus waddi) originate from Australia, where they range from Queensland to southern New South Wales. They live in shallow coastal waters ranging from just a few feet in depth down to about 250 feet. They are commonly found during the nighttime hours in shallow high-energy surge zones, where they move about the rocky underwater terrain in search of small invertebrates and bony fish to feed on.
Despite their common name, Blind Sharks can actually see equally well as any other shark species. Their common name came from its habit of closing its eyes when taken out of the water. Blind Sharks make their way into the aquarium hobby from time to time since they are fairly well suited for larger home aquariums between 360 and 1000 gallons in size.
Most captive raised Blind Shark specimens only reach about 3 feet in length, which along with being a benthic or bottom-dwelling Shark species make them better suited for aquarium life than open water shark species. They do make it into the hobby are often marketed under a wide variety of common names that include: Blind Shark, Aussie Blind Shark, Australian Blind Shark, Brown Carpet Shark, Grey Carpet Shark and other similar variants.
Aquarium Care
There are some general aspects of shark husbandry that all hobbyists looking to keep sharks in their home aquarium should be aware of. All sharks even those available within the aquarium hobby are large in terms of home aquarium sizes. Therefore it is important that all sharks are housed in large aquariums that have a foot print that is wide and long, which will give the shark room to swim and accommodate a larger water volume.
A good rule of thumb for a minimum shark aquarium is for the aquarium to be at least 1 to 2 times as wide as the shark is long and 2 to 4 times as long, with larger always being better. Secondly, sharks require plenty of dissolved oxygen in the water and are sensitive to low oxygen environments.
Plenty of water volume, moderate water currents and strong mechanical and biological filtration is very important in order to support the bio load that a large bodied fish like a shark places on an aquarium filtration system. A sand or mixed sand rubble substrate is important for benthic shark species that spend a lot of time laying on the substrate so that they do not scratch or agitate their underside which can lead to open wounds and disease.
Lastly, the aquarium should be well covered and all equipment like heaters and skimmers should be outside the main aquarium in a sump or other external setup to eliminate any excess electrical currents in the water, which will stress the sharks being housed in the display tank.
In addition to the common requirements of smaller reef sharks being housed in the home aquarium, Australian Blind Sharks need very high levels of dissolved oxygen and strong water movement. They will also do best when presented with multiple large rocky caves and rock overhangs in which they can seek refuge and explore.
Australian Blind Sharks will also appreciate vegetation like sea grass or other hardy marine plants. Hobbyists should strive to design the aquarium decor to provide both large rocky caves, crevices and other shaded areas, along with plenty of open area where the shark can swim freely and turn around easily.
Feeding & Nutrition
Wild Blind Sharks feed on a wide range of small invertebrates and small bony fishes that they come across in the rocky coastal caves in crevices that they frequent each night while looking for food.
Despite being a nocturnal species in the wild, Blind Sharks adapt remarkably well to aquarium life and will generally accept food within a day or so of being added to the aquarium. Most hobbyists do not experience any issues with feeding this species even while the bright aquarium lights are on.
Blind Sharks should be fed a variety of marine based meaty foods like clams, squid, shrimp, fish, crabs, mollusks, prawns or other similar raw foods. It is best to feed a varied diet in order to insure that the shark receives a variety of vitamins and minerals in order to maintain a strong immune system.
Additional Photos