Thorny Lanternshark

About the Thorny Lanternshark

The X lanternshark is a species of lantershark found in the Western Indian Ocean, off the coast of East Africa, at depths of 200 to 500 m. Like all members of the lantern shark family they’re small, with a maximum length of 27 cm, they live in deepwater, and have light-producing photophores on their body. These photophores are just bright enough to mask their silhouette and make them look invisible from below, and allows them to sneak up on prey.

They’re ovoviviparous. The embryos develop in eggs inside of the mother until they’re ready to hatch.  The average litter size is unknown. Pups are born about 6 cm long.

They’re caught as bycatch but they’re not targeted due to their small size. Their conservation status is currently “Least Concern”, but more studies are required to understand their biology and population health.

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Scientific Name Etmopterus sentosus
OrderDog and Angelfish Sharks - Squaliformes
CitesNot Listed
IUCNLeast Concern
Litter Size Unknown
Common Length 27.0 cm
Max LenghtNA
Depth Range 200 - 500 m
DistributionWestern Indian Ocean