Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class:Class: Chondrichthyes (sharks and rays)
Order: Carcharhiniformes (Ground sharks)
Family: Carcharhinidae (Requiem sharks eg migratory, live-bearing sharks of warm seas)

Genus/species: Carcharhinus melanopterus

All fins tipped with black, the large dorsal fin with a white band beneath the black tip, conspicuous white bands along flanks, sometimes edged with black. Otherwise, yellowish-tan above, white below.
Length up to 2 m (6.5 ft) long and weight up to 13.6 kg (30 lbs)

Carcharhinus melanopterus2979831615_73451da081_b

DISTRIBUTION: Subtropical from Red Sea and East Africa to the Hawaiian Islands and the Tuamoto Archipelago. Also enters the Mediterranean from the Red Sea (via the Suez Canal). Prefers inshore coral reefs and the intertidal zone. Has been observed in mangrove areas and fresh water, traveling in and out with the tide.

DIET IN THE WILD: Teleost fishes sea snakes. Predation upon other elasmobranchs was rare.

REPRODUCTION: C. melanopterus is viviparous, incubating young for up to 16 months, producing 2–4 pups per litter. In a fashion not uncommon in sharks, the male takes the female’s pectoral fin in his teeth and the two mate belly to belly.


PREDATORS: Preyed upon by other sharks as well as large groupers. Average lifespan c. 12 years

CONSERVATION: IUCN Near threatened (NT) 2015-4
The Blacktip Reef Shark is not a target of major fisheries, but is regularly caught by inshore fisheries in India and Thailand. It is caught for human consumption, fishmeal, and their fins enter the oriental sharkfin trade, for sharkfin soup. Their livers are also sought as a rich source of oil.

REMARKS: Often hunt in packs, driving prey into a tight ball and then attacking the ball in a feeding frenzy, even leaping out of the water. Its distinctive appearance and active swimming habit make it a favorite specimen for aquariums. It has been known to bite people wading in shallow water and is aggressive towards spear fishers.


Californiua Academy of Sciences Steinhart Aquarium Reef Lagoon 2-2-16


Californiua Academy of Sciences Steinhart Aquarium Reef Lagoon 2-2-16

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