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Zebra Bullhead Shark
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(Heterodontus zebra) Expert Semi-aggressive 48" 1000 gallons 60-72° F, dKH 8-12, pH 8.1-8.4, sg 1.020-1.025 Carnivore Western Pacific, Japan, Australia Heterodontidae Sharks Fish Only The Zebra Bullhead Shark (Heterodontus zebra) is a member of the Heterodontidae family of bottom dwelling sharks, which is found living in deeper waters of the Western Pacific from Japan in the north to Australia in the south. While Zebra Bullhead Sharks can tolerate a range of temperatures between 58°F to 79°F, they prefer water temperatures between 60°F - 72°F. They are a very attractive species of Horn Shark that have distinctive black vertical bands or stripes over a tan or cream colored body. They are both slow swimming and slow growing, which combined with their ability to acclimate well to aquarium life, have made them commonly available within the aquarium hobby. While they have many desirable traits for aquarium life, Zebra Bullhead Sharks do require a very large aquarium as they reach adult sizes up to 4 feet in length. The Zebra Bullhead Shark is a good beginner shark for experienced marine aquarium hobbyists looking to begin keeping sharks species, provided they have a very large (1000 gallon or more) aquarium. Like most shark species available within the aquarium hobby the Zebra Bullhead Shark can be housed in aquariums as small as 100 gallons while a juvenile, but must be moved to larger aquariums as it matures and increases in size. Adult Zebra Bullhead Sharks reach sizes upwards of 4 feet in length and will require a tank of at least 10x5x3 feet in size and totaling roughly 1000 gallons. Being a temperate water species, Zebra Bullhead Sharks prefer cooler water temperatures ranging from 60°F to 72°F; however, they can live in warmer more tropical water conditions with water temperatures in the mid 70s. Zebra Bullhead Sharks kept at warmer water temperatures will have a more active metabolism, thus will consume more food and grow more quickly. In fact Zebra Bullhead Sharks kept in temperatures about 75°F have been known to grow upwards of twice as fast as specimens kept in water conditions closer to 60°F. Bottom dwelling shark species like the Zebra Bullhead Shark do best with a soft sandy substrate that will not irritate their abdomens and provides them with a more natural habitat. Like other sharks species, the Zebra Bullhead Shark requires high levels of dissolved oxygen, clean well filtered water and no stray electrical currents in the tank. Keeping heaters, skimmers, circulation pumps and other equipment in a sump will help to eliminate electrical currents in the display tank. Lastly, the Zebra Bullhead Shark has a very peaceful disposition for a predator species, and can be successfully kept with a wide range of medium sized peaceful to semi-aggressive fish species. In their natural habitat Zebra Bullhead Sharks feed on bottom dwelling invertebrates and crustaceans with the occasional small bony fish. Zebra Bullhead Sharks are nocturnal hunters that move about the ocean bottom looking for urchins, mollusks and other similar prey buried in the sand or moving about the rocks. The Zebra Bullhead Sharks mouth and teeth are well designed for grabbing hard shelled prey and breaking through their outer shell in order to access the soft flesh inside. Zebra Bullhead Sharks that are new to the aquarium environment can be enticed to eat by feeding them with the aquarium lights dimmed or by offering live saltwater feeder shrimps or fresh meaty marine items like squid or mussels. Once acclimated they will readily accept a variety of meaty marine foods like shrimp, mussel, squid, clams, silver sides and other similar fare. Begin by feeding 4 to 5 times per week while keeping an eye on the sharks overall body girth. Adjust feeding accordingly so that the sharks body maintains a healthy round proportion, without the belly bulging out.
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Whitespotted Bamboo Shark
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(Chiloscyllium plagiosum) Expert Semi-aggressive 38" 350 gallons 72-79°F; sg 1.020-1.025; pH 8.1-8.4 Carnivore Indo-Pacific Hemiscyllidae Sharks Fish Only Whitespotted Bamboo Sharks (Chiloscyllium plagiosum) or Marbled Bamboo Sharks are found throughout the Indo-Pacific ocean, where they are generally found living on coral reefs and shallow lagoons. Like other Carpet or Bamboo shark species, the Whitespotted Bamboo Shark uses its slender body to get inside rocky crevices and holes in the reef to hunt for inverts, crustaceans and small fish species. They also use the reef and/or rocky formations along the lagoon bottom to protect them from other larger shark species. Whitespotted Bamboo Sharks are commonly found within the aquarium hobby due to their relative small size and ease of care. Adult specimens generally reach about 30 to 36 inches in the aquarium environment, which means they can be housed in aquariums as small as 450 to 500 gallons as an adult. The Whitespotted Bamboo Sharks slender body and natural reef habitat also make them better suited for aquarium life as they can maneuver in tight areas and shallow water. Whitespotted Bamboo Sharks require excellent water conditions, no stray electrical currents in the water, a soft sandy or mixed sand/rubble substrate, open room to swim and as large of tank as possible. Unlike some other shark species commonly seen within the hobby like the Nurse Shark, Whitespotted Bamboo Sharks are small enough as an adult to be properly housed in larger aquariums ranging from 350 to 500 gallons depending on shape. It is important to maintain excellent water conditions when keeping Whitespotted Bamboo Sharks, thus aquariums housing this species should have excellent biological filtration, large efficient protein skimmer and a large sump to help augment water volume. All shark aquariums should be securely covered in order to prevent sharks from jumping out and should be designed with maximum length and width in mind to create the largest possible aquarium footprint providing for maximum swimming area. Tropical sharks like the Whitespotted Bamboo Shark also required very high levels of dissolved oxygen in the water, thus there should be plenty of water surface agitation, additional power heads or air stones to provide as much dissolved oxygen as possible. Bottom dwelling shark species like the Whitespotted Bamboo Shark should generally not be kept with fish species that tend to pick at the reef or at bottom dwelling inverts. Examples of poor tank mates for Bamboo Sharks include: Large Angelfish, Triggerfish, Puffers, or Groupers larger than the shark. Good tank mates include: other similarly sized shark species, Stingrays, Tangs, smaller Groupers, Grunts, Hamlets and other similar species. Bottom dwelling Carpet Sharks like the Whitespotted Bamboo Shark are well known invertebrate and crustacean predators, thus they should not be kept with crabs, shrimp, snails, starfish, etc unless they are intended as food. Whitespotted Bamboo Shark in the wild spend much of their time foraging amongst tropical reefs and within shallow lagoons looking for a variety of invertebrates like shrimp, small crabs & clams on which to feed, along with crustaceans and small fish. In the aquarium environment Whitespotted Bamboo Sharks will quickly adjust to eating prepared meaty foods including: fresh or frozen silver sides, squid, clams, shrimp, clam, mussel and pieces of fish flesh. It is best to feed them a variety of marine based meaty foods in order to provide them with a complete nutritional diet, which will help them maintain a strong immune system. Juvenile specimens should be fed 3 to 4 times per week, while keeping an eye on both their growth in length and girth. Adjust feeding accordingly so that the shark grows at a reasonable pace while maintaining a body girth that is not too skinny or overly plump. If well fed they tend to leave most other fish tank mates alone, but they are likely to attempt to consume invertebrates or crustaceans while they hunt during the night.
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Whitetip Reef Shark
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(Triaenodon obesus) Expert Aggressive 70" 2400 gallons 72-78° F, dKH 8-12, sg 1.020-1.025, pH 8.1-8.4 Carnivore Indian Ocean, Red Sea, South Pacific, Eastern Pacific Carcharhinidae Sharks Predatory Whitetip reef sharks (Triaenodon obesus) are found in clear shallow waters surrounding coral reefs ranging from the Indian Ocean, Red Sea, South Pacific and all the way to portions of the Eastern Pacific near Panama and Costa Rico. Their wide distribution is a testament to their success and adaptability in nature, which has allowed them to fluorish and spread throughout the southern hemisphere. Although there have been reports of Whitetip reef sharks in depths upwards of 300 meters (1,000 feet), they are most commonly found in shallow waters between 10 to 50 meters in depth. Rarely coming near the waters surface, Whitetip reef sharks are capable of lying motionless on the sea bottom or reef ledge for long periods of time. During daylight hours, Whitetip reef sharks form groups of individual in caves and rocky crevices, where they rest in preparations for the nights hunting. During the nighttime hours they will patrol the reef and nearby reef flats hunting for small bony fish and a variety of invertebrates on which to feed. Unlike open water shark species, the Whitetip reef shark will many months or even years at a time in a relatively small home range provided there is adequate food and little pressure from larger predators. Like most marine shark species, the Whitetip reef shark is only suitable for advanced marine aquarium hobbyists with very large aquariums and advanced filtration systems. However, they are more aquarium friendly than some of the other reef sharks available within the aquarium hobby, like the Blacktip reef shark or Nurse shark. Unlike the Blacktip reef shark, the Whitetip can lay motionless for long periods of time by pumping water through its gills and unlike the Nurse shark stays relatively small and thin bodied. Whitetip reef sharks will most often grow to about 5 feet in length in the aquarium environment, and will maintain a relatively slender body. Where as the Blacktip reef shark requires a very large swimming area (15 foot diameter or more) to support its constant movement and burst/glide swimming motion, while the Nurse shark requires a huge aquarium (8000 plus gallons) to support its upwards of 14 feet in length, the Whitetip reef shark can do well in larger aquariums of around 2000 gallons. Despite being better suited for aquarium life than most sharks species, there are still from serious considerations any hobbyist thinking of keeping a Whitetip reef shark needs to think about. Despite being small and slender for a shark, they still reach a sizable 5 feet in length and produce a large amount of biological waste compared to typical marine aquarium species like Tangs, Angels, Triggers, Groupers, etc. Also while a relatively small and slender shark species, they are still huge compared to the average aquarium fish and require a very large aquarium 12 feet or more in length, 8 to 10 feet in width and 4 to 5 feet in depth. First and fore most the Whitetip reef shark requires a very large aquarium with a large footprint and a reasonable height of at least 3-4 feet depth. Secondly, they will need strong waterflow, high levels of dissolved oxygen and a robust filtration system that can turn over the aquarium at least 6 times or more per hour and handle the high biological load that a larger fish like a Whitetip reef shark can put on a filtration system. The aquarium should be designed with the size, strength and unique requirements of marine sharks in mind. All equipment like heaters, drain tubes, etc. should be kept outside of the main display tank and instead heaters should be in the sump and drains and returns flush mounted in the aquarium. The top of the aquarium should be tightly covered and well secured to keep curious and sometimes rauchous sharks from accidentally jumping out of the aquarium. The substrate should consist of sand or a sand / crushed coral mix in order to not irritate the underside of the shark while at rest and to facilitate their natural hunting methods which include turning up the substrate looking for invertebrates. Rock work and aquascaping should take into account the size the shark and their need for plenty of swimming area, while still providing large caves or crevices in which they can seek shelter when needed. Lastly tank mates shoud include a mix of larger fish species that will not be consumed as food by the sharks, but not so aggressive or large themselves that they would either pick on or see the Whitetip as food. Good choices of tank mates include: larger grouper, grunts, Large Angelfish and large open water Tangs. Poor choices include: ultra aggressive Triggerfish (Titan Triger, ect.) Octopus, much larger shark species (Bull Shark, Lemon Shark, etc.) and much larger grouper species (Bumblebee, etc.). Whitetip reef sharks are specialists at preying on a variety of bottom dwelling prey like crabs, lobsters, octopus and other bottom dwelling inverts. They are also adept at feeding on bony fish species ranging from Damselfishes all they way to larger species like Triggers, Tangs and Angelfish. They are very active nighttime feeders who can easily get into reef caves, crevices and into the substrate to suck out and consume any manner of fish or invertebrate. Hobbyists should feed them a variety of meaty marine items including: squid, chopped fish, mussels, clams, shrimp or other similar marine based meaty items. They should be fed 2 to 3 times per week and the hobbyist will need to monitor their overall health and girth to determine the right amount of food to feed at each feeding. It is best to feed them an amount they will consume with 10 minutes or less and pare down the amount fed based on visual inspection of their girth and overall wellness. Feeding a wide variety of meaty marine based foods and soaking the foods in a vitamin rich supplement designed for marine sharks will help ensure that they receive all the nutrients and minerals that they need in order to maintain a healthy immune system.
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Blind Shark
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(Brachaelurus waddi) Expert Aggressive 38" 360 gallons 65-75° F, dKH 8-12, pH 8.1-8.4, sg 1.020-1.025 Carnivore Australia Brachaeluridae Sharks Predatory 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. 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. 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.
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Port Jackson Shark
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(Heterodontus portusjacksoni) Expert Semi-aggressive 60" 1200 gallons 60-72° F, dKH 8-12, pH 8.1-8.4, sg 1.020-1.025 Carnivore Southern Australia, Port Jackson Heterodontidae Sharks Fish Only Port Jackson Shark (Heterodontus portusjacksoni) are a member of the Heterodontidae family of bottom dwelling sharks, which is found living in the temperate waters off the southern coast of Australia. While Port Jacksons can tolerate a range of temperatures between 58°F to 79°F, they prefer water temperatures between 60°F - 72°F. Port Jackson Sharks are a very attractive species of Horn Shark, that due to its slow swimming, slow growth and ability to acclimate well to aquarium life, have made them a mainstay within the aquarium hobby. While they have many desirable traits for aquarium life, Port Jackson do require a very large aquarium as they reach adult sizes of between 4 and 5 feet in length. The Port Jackson Shark is a good beginner shark for experienced marine aquarium hobbyists with very large (1000 gallon or more) aquariums. Like most shark species available within the aquarium hobby the Port Jackson Shark can be housed in aquariums as small as 100 gallons while a juvenile, but must be moved to larger aquariums as it matures and increases in size. Adult Port Jackson sharks reach sizes upwards of 5 feet in length and will require a tank of at least 12x6x3 feet in size and totaling roughly 1200 to 1300 gallons. Being a temperate water species, Port Jacksons prefer cooler water temperatures ranging from 60°F to 72°F; however, they can live in warmer more tropical water conditions with water temperatures in the mid 70s. Port Jackson Sharks kept at warmer water temperatures will have a more active metabolism, thus will consume more food and grow more quickly. In fact Port Jackson Sharks kept in temperatures about 75°F have been known to grow upwards of twice as fast as specimens kept in water conditions closer to 60°F. Bottom dwelling shark species like the Port Jackson do best with a soft sandy substrate that will not irritate their abdomens and provides them with a more natural habitat. Like other sharks species, the Port Jackson requires high levels of dissolved oxygen, clean well filtered water and no stray electrical currents in the tank. Keeping heaters, skimmers, circulation pumps and other equipment in a sump will help to eliminate electrical currents in the display tank. Lastly, the Port Jackson Shark has a very peaceful disposition for a predator species, and can be successfully kept with a wide range of medium sized peaceful to semi-aggressive fish species. In their natural habitat Port Jackson Sharks feed on bottom dwelling invertebrates and crustaceans with the occasional small bony fish. Port Jackson are nocturnal hunters that move about the ocean bottom looking for urchins, mollusks and other similar prey buried in the sand or moving about the rocks. The Port Jacksons mouth and teeth are well designed for grabbing hard shelled prey and breaking through their outer shell in order to access the soft flesh inside. Port Jackson Sharks that are new to the aquarium environment can be enticed to eat by feeding them with the aquarium lights dimmed or by offering live saltwater feeder shrimps or fresh meaty marine items like squid or mussels. Once acclimated they will readily accept a variety of meaty marine foods like shrimp, mussel, squid, clams, silver sides and other similar fare. Begin by feeding 4 to 5 times per week while keeping an eye on the sharks overall body girth. Adjust feeding accordingly so that the sharks body maintains a healthy round proportion, without the belly bulging out.
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Arabian Bamboo Shark
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(Chiloscyllium arabicum) Expert Semi-aggressive 30" 350 gallons 72-80° F, dKH 8-12, pH 8.1-8.4, sg 1.020-1.025 Carnivore Indian Ocean, Arabian Gulf, Arabian Peninsula Hemiscyllidae Sharks Fish Only The Arabian Bamboo Shark (Chiloscyllium arabicum) is a species of carpet shark, which is found living in the shallow coral reefs and rocky coastal waters from the Persian Gulf to the Indian Ocean. Arabian Bamboo Sharks grow to a little over 2 feet in length in the wild, which combined with their slender flexible bodies allows them to fit into tight rocky caves in crevices in search of small fish and crustaceans. Their relative small size has also made the species very popular with aquarium hobbyists as well. While they are not considered a common species within the aquarium trade, Arabian Bamboo Sharks are available from time to time. Their natural habitat of shallow coral reefs and lagoons (usually in 30 to 50 feet of water) allows the Arabian Bamboo Shark to acclimate well to large aquariums. Despite their relative small size, the Arabian Bamboo Shark has a nice "shark" look to it as compared to some of the cat shark species which are almost eel-like in appearance. The Arabian Bamboo Shark body is slender which allows them to fit into the tight spaces found in a coral reef, but still thick enough to have a flattened shark-like appearance. They have a long thick rounded snout with nostrils set back from the tip of the mouth. Eyes are set high on their head, which allows them a good field of vision for spotting prey and larger predatory species with which to avoid. Their large pectoral and pelvic fins combined with a large dorsal fin set midway back on the body also work to give the Arabian Bamboo Shark the look of a larger more proto-typical shark species. Like other shark species, the Arabian Bamboo Shark needs excellent water conditions, no stray electrical currents in the water, a soft sandy substrate, open room to swim and as large of tank as possible. Unlike many other shark species commonly seen within the hobby, Arabian Bamboo Sharks are small enough as an adult to be properly housed in larger aquariums ranging from 350 to 500 gallons depending on shape. It is important to maintain excellent water conditions when keeping Arabian Bamboo Sharks, thus aquariums housing this species should have excellent biological filtration, large efficient protein skimmer and a large sump to help augment water volume. All shark aquariums should be securely covered in order to prevent sharks from jumping out and should be designed with maximum length and width in mind to create the largest possible aquarium footprint providing for maximum swimming area. Tropical sharks like the Arabian Bamboo Shark also required very high levels of dissolved oxygen in the water, thus there should be plenty of water surface agitation, additional power heads or air stones to provide as much dissolved oxygen as possible. All sharks including the Arabian Bamboo Shark have thick bodies and will produce a much higher bio-load than a typical aquarium fish species. It is very important that aquariums housing sharks have excellent biological and mechanical filtration in order to maintain the water quality at a very high level. It is also very important to provide a very high level of dissolved oxygen in the water as the majority of tropical reef sharks live in water that is highly oxygenated and will have a very low tolerance for lower dissolved oxygen levels. High quality and highly oxygenated water will help the shark maintain a strong immune system and will greatly increase their lifespan within an aquarium environment. Wild Arabian Bamboo Sharks spend much of their time foraging amongst tropical reefs and within shallow lagoons looking for a variety of invertebrates like shrimp, small crabs & clams on which to feed, along with crustaceans and small fish. In the aquarium environment Arabian Bamboo Sharks will quickly adjust to eating prepared meaty foods including: fresh or frozen silver sides, clams, shrimp, clam, mussel and pieces of fish flesh. It is best to feed them a variety of marine based meaty foods in order to provide them with a complete nutritional diet, which will help them maintain a strong immune system. Begin by feeding them 2 to 3 times per week, while keeping an eye on both their growth in length and girth. Adjust feeding accordingly so that the shark grows at a reasonable pace while maintaining a body girth that is not too skinny or overly plump. If well fed they tend to leave most other tank mates alone, but there is always the possibility of them consuming invertebrates or small fish species.
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Coral Catshark
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(Atelomycterus marmoratus) Moderate Semi-Aggressive 26" 180 gallons 72-82° F, dKH 8-12, sg 1.020-1.025, pH 8.1-8.4 Carnivore Indo-Pacific, Western Pacific Scyliorhinidae Sharks Fish Only The Coral Catshark is small tropical shark species found living amongst shallow tropical reefs and tidal pools throughout the Indo-Pacific and Western Pacific. Coral Catsharks are one of the few shark species imported for the aquarium trade that stay small enough to be properly housed by the average aquarium hobbyist. With an average adult length of 24" (28" maximum), the Coral Catshark can be housed as an adult in a 300 to 350 gallon aquarium, with a 450 or larger aquarium being ideal. Coral Catsharks also come from shallow tropical waters that allows them to be housed with a wide range of tropical fish species available within the aquarium trade. Coral Catsharks have both and attractive body shape and great coloration, and unlike bamboo or nurse sharks, are active swimmers that will spend much of their time swimming about rocky caves and crevices within the aquarium exploring and hunting for food. Coral Catsharks are by far one of the best species of shark for the home aquarium, as they are suitable for larger standard aquariums of 180 gallons or more maintained by intermediate to advanced marine aquarium hobbyists. Like other shark species, the Coral Catshark needs excellent water conditions, no stray electrical currents in the water, a soft sandy substrate, open room to swim and as large of tank as possible. Unlike many other shark species commonly seen within the hobby, Coral Catsharks are small enough as an adult to be properly housed in a 300 gallon or larger aquarium. It is important to maintain excellent water conditions when keeping Coral Catsharks, thus aquariums housing this species should have excellent biological filtration, large efficient protein skimmer and a large sump to help augment water volume. All shark aquariums should be securely covered in order to prevent sharks from jumping out and should be designed with maximum length and width in mind to create the largest possible aquarium footprint providing for maximum swimming area. Tropical sharks like the Coral Catshark also required very high levels of dissolved oxygen in the water, thus there should be plenty of water surface agitation, additional power heads or air stones to provide as much dissolved oxygen as possible. Coral Catsharks can be kept with a wide range of tropical fish species ranging from tangs & angelfish to larger Damsels and clownfish. They should not be kept with aggressive angelfish, puffers or Triggerfish that can nip at their eyes and fins. Aquariums housing Coral Catsharks should contain a mix of open areas for swimming and rock or coral formations to provide caves and crevices for the shark to explore and seek shelter in when threatened. Coral Catsharks can live in very warm waters and will do well in aquariums with stable water temperatures ranging from 78 to 82° F. Coral Catsharks are an active slow swimming species that will swim about the aquarium moving in and out of the live rock decor, that when properly fed should be docile to all but the most small fish species within the aquarium. Wild Coral Catsharks spend much of their time foraging amongst tropical reefs and within tidal pools looking for a variety of invertebrates like shrimp, small crabs & clams on which to feed, along with small fish. In the aquarium environment Coral Catsharks will quickly adjust to eating prepared meaty foods including: fresh or frozen silver sides, clams, shrimp, clam, mussel and pieces of fish flesh. If well fed they tend to leave most other tank mates alone, but there is always the possibility of them consuming small invertebrates or very small fish species.
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Chain Catshark
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(Scyliorhinus retifer) Moderate Semi-Aggressive 24" 180 gallons 55-68° F, dKH 10-15, sg 1.020-1.025, pH 8.0-8.4 Carnivore Western Atlantic, Gulf of Mexico, Caribbean Sea Scyliorhinidae Sharks Fish Only The Chain Catshark is a slender, small bodied shark that is found in deep waters (200 to 2000 feet in depth) off the eastern coast of the United States down to the Gulf of Mexico and Western Caribbean Sea. Chain Catsharks or as they are also referred to as Chain Dogfish have been showing up within the aquarium hobby more and more due to their attractive "shark like" appearance and relative small size. Since Chain Catsharks only reach an adult size of around 2 feet, they can be comfortably kept in many common aquarium sizes ranging from 180 to 300 gallons. They are also a slow swimming species that is used to living in and around rocky areas of the ocean bottom and can effectively maneuver around rock formations in the aquarium environment. Their wide range of habitat ranging from the northern Atlantic waters (50°) to Gulf of Mexico & Caribbean waters (68°) has conditioned the Chainshark to a wider range of water temperatures than many small shark species. The depth at which Chain Catsharks live does moderate the difference in water temperatures from the far northern and southern extremes of their habitat, thus a temperature range of 55° to 66° is recommended for keeping Chain Catsharks in an aquarium environment. As Chain Catsharks are a deep water species they are more accustomed to cooler water temperatures ranging from 55-68°, in the aquarium environment it is best to keep them in water around 68° as this will allow them to be housed with other more commonly available fish species used to warmer temperatures and still provide them with a water temperature they can tolerate. The modest size (for a shark) and the natural habitat of rocky areas of ocean floor make the Chain Catshark a good species for large aquarium setups. As with other Shark species an aquarium housing a Chain Catshark should have a well covered top to prevent the shark from jumping out. Strong biological and chemical filtration is also essential to keep up with the bio-load of thick bodied 2 foot long adult specimen. The aquarium substrate should be sand or a sand mix so that the shark does not scratch or injure its underside while swimming along the bottom, as this can create open sores which lead to infections and possibly death. Chain Catsharks are only aggressive towards fish or inverts that they see as food items (small enough to fit in their mouths), so they should be kept with other similarly sized fish species. Caution should be taken when housing sharks with particularly aggressive large Angelfish or Triggerfish as they are known to pick at the fins of small sharks. Chain Catsharks are Oviparous breeders with egg cases being laid in pairs, typically once or twice a month. The female will swim around the object the egg is laid on until the egg capsule tendrils are securely fastened and the egg is secured in place. 44 to 52 eggs may be laid during each breading season. Egg capsules are vaguely rectangular ovoid's measuring 1 inch x 2 inches in size. Chain Catshark eggs are harvested for the aquarium trade and have been known to successfully hatch within the aquarium. Chain Catsharks feed primarily on deep water prey such as small fish, crustaceans, and cephalopods, ranging from crabs, shrimp, mollusks, clams, squid and small fish. In the home aquarium they will readily accept raw marine seafood's including: shrimp, small fish, chopped fish, clams, scallops, squid, mollusks or other similar uncooked marine meaty foods.
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Grey Smooth Hound Shark
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(Mustelus californicus) Expert Semi-Aggressive 49" 3000 gallons 60-74° F, dKH 8-12, sg 1.020-1.025, pH 8.0-8.4 Carnivore Eastern Pacific, Baja California Triakidae Sharks Fish Only Grey Smooth Hound Sharks originate in temperate waters of the eastern Pacific, primarily from California down to Mexico. They are generally found in water temperatures that range from the low 60's to low 70's and from depths as shallow as 20 to 30 feet down to near 150 feet in depth. In the wild they spend the majority of their time slowly swimming near the ocean bottom or rock formation in search of crustacean and small fish on which to feed. While they are active fish that swim most of the time, they tend to stay near structures and the ocean floor in order to avoid larger more aggressive shark species that live in more open and deeper waters. Grey Smooth Hound Sharks have sharp teeth and are true sharks, but are not harmful to humans and will be highly unlikely to bite a human unless provoked. This species is considered suitable for expert marine aquarium hobbyists with very large aquariums due to their relatively small size (3 to 4 feet) and active but slower swimming style. Grey Smooth Hound Sharks can tolerate a range of water conditions from water temperatures between 59-72 F and salinity ranges of 1.020-1.025 SG, with a pH range of 8.0-8.4, they are temperate water sharks that will do best with water temperatures between 62 F and 68 F. It is also very important to maintain very high levels of dissolved oxygen within the water (especially at temperatures over 68 F) as Grey Smooth hounds are used to high levels of oxygen in the water and will not tolerate lower oxygen levels. If dissolved oxygen levels are too low, the Grey Smooth Hound Shark will exhibit increased rapid gill movement, erratic or elevated swimming motion and will be more prone to jumping or thrashing about at the surface of the water. In the home aquarium environment, Grey Smooth Hound Sharks should be provided an aquarium that can comfortably support their adult size of approximately 4 feet for female specimens and 3.5 feet for male specimens. They should be provided an aquarium that is at a minimum 4 times the length of the shark, twice the width of the shark and twice the height of the shark, thus this would mean an aquarium similar to 16 feet x 8 feet x 3 feet in size. Young Grey Smooth Hounds can live in aquariums as small as 450 to 500 gallons in size, but will need to be moved to a larger aquarium or pond within 1 to 2 years time. On average the Grey Smooth Hound Shark is born at around 9 to 12 inches, will grow 6 to 8 inches per year until reaching its adult size in 2 to 3 years and will live an average life span of 6 years for males and up to 9 years for females. Like other shark species, the Grey Smooth Hound Shark should have a smooth sandy substrate, plenty of open swimming room with some rock or coral structures and a secure top to the aquarium to prevent the shark from jumping out. They have a thick muscular body for a shark their size and will put a significant load on both the mechanical and biological filtration. Therefore, filters for shark aquariums should be able to process large volumes of water and be able to efficiently remove large volumes of fish waste from the aquarium. It is recommended that a shark aquarium have a very large protein skimmer, significant biological filtration and regular water changes in order to maintain high quality water within the aquarium. Grey Smooth Hound Sharks feed primarily on crustaceans in the wild, ranging from crabs, shrimp, mollusks, clams, squid and small fish. In the home aquarium they will readily accept raw marine seafoods including: shrimp, small fish, chopped fish, clams, scallops, squid, mollusks or other similar uncooked marine meaty foods.
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Brown Smooth Hound Shark
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(Mustelus henlei) Expert Semi-Aggressive 36" 900 gallons 60-74° F, dKH 8-12, sg 1.020-1.025, pH 8.1-8.4 Carnivore Eastern Pacific, Baja California, Sea of Cortez, Ecuador to Peru Triakidae Sharks Fish Only Brown Smooth Hound Sharks are a relatively small (3 feet) slender bodied Smooth Hound shark that are found living along the eastern pacific coast of California and Baja California and also along the coast of Ecuador and Peru. They live in shallow bays and coastal areas up to around 200 feet in depth that have sandy or muddy bottoms in which they can hunt for their staple food sources of crabs, shrimps, small fishes and other invertebrates. Brown Smooth Hound bodies are mostly a solid iridescent bronze brown coloration with a white belly and underside. They are mostly found living in cooler temperate waters that range from 60° F to 74° F. Brown Smooth Hound Sharks can be found living singularly or in small schools of Brown Smooth Hounds and even with other similar shark species like the Leopard Shark (Triakis semifasciata) or Spiny Dogfish (Squalus acanthias). The Brown Smooth Hound Shark reaches sexual maturity at about 24 inches in length, which it can attain in about 2 to 4 years depending on abundance of food and water conditions. In the wild Brown Smooth-hound Sharks are believed to live on average about 15 years, with this increasing or decreasing in the home aquarium environment depending on aquarium conditions and quality of foods being fed. While Brown Smooth Hounds are a relatively small shark in that they only reach lengths up to 3 feet, they are very active muscular fish that need plenty of open room to swim. Unlike reef dwelling sharks, Smooth Hound shark species are active strong swimmers that will require aquariums that are considerably longer and wider than the maximum length of the shark itself, with an aquarium length 4 times the length of the shark, a width of at least 2 times the length of the shark and lastly a depth of at least 2 times the height of the shark. They are also a thick bodied species that will require a very strong filtration system that can handle the amount of bio-load that they will put on the system. It is for this reason that a protein skimmer is required along with a strong mechanical and biological filter. The bottom of the aquarium should be a soft sandy substrate so that this swift swimming species does not scratch or irritate its underside as it swims about the bottom of the tank. The Brown Smooth Hound will need plenty of open swimming room, but the aquarium should also contain some rocky structures that the shark can use as cover if it feels threatened. Tank mates should be chosen carefully as they should not be too small so as not to be confused as a food item and also able to coexist comfortably with the strong swimming Brown Smooth-hound. Lastly, Brown Smooth-hound Sharks come from cooler temperate waters that range from the mid 60's to low 70's depending on the time of the year, thus should be kept in similar conditions within the home aquarium. While it is possible to keep them in warmer conditions reaching into the high 70's this will likely shorten the lifespan of the shark and increase bio-load as the shark will need to consume more food in the warmer water conditions. Brown Smooth Hounds will eat a variety of meaty foods including crab, shrimp, mussels, squid, pieces of fish, small fish (silversides or equivalent) or other similar meaty foodstuffs. Like all sharks, Brown Smooth Hounds are a predatory fish species and will consume most invertebrates or small fish that they come across within the aquarium environment. They should be fed every other day or 3 to 4 times per week in order to provide them with the necessary nutrition, but to not cause excessive growth from overfeeding.
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