Carcharhinus sorrah

(Valenciennes in Müller & Henle, 1839)

Spottail shark
Classification: Elasmobranchii Carcharhiniformes Carcharhinidae

Reference of the original description
Müller, J. & Henle, F.G.J. (1841)
Systematische Beschreibung der Plagiostomen. Berlin, Veit, pp. 1–200

Image of the original description

Carcharhinus sorrah (Müller & Henle, 1838)

Synonyms / new combinations and misspellings
Carcharhinus aff. sorrah, Carcharhinus bleekeri, Carcharhinus cf. sorrah, Carcharhinus isobel, Carcharhinus spallanzani, Carcharias bleekeri, Carcharias sorrah, Carcharias spallanzani, Carcharias taeniatus, Carcharias (Prionodon) bleekeri, Carcharias (Prionodon) sorrah, Carcharinus bleekeri, Carcharinus sorrah, Carcharinus spallanzani, Eulamia bleekeri, Eulamia sorrah, Eulamia spallanzani, Galeolamna isobel, Galeolamna (Galeolamnoides) isobel, Mapolamia spallanzani, Oxyrhina spallanzani, Oxyrrhina spallanzanii, Squalus spallanzani, Squalus (Carcharinus) sorrah

Carcharhinus sorrah
Lectotype: RMNH: 4294 Paralectotype: MNHN: 1132; MNHN: 1131; ZSL: uncat. (whereabouts unknown)
Carcharias taeniatus
XXXX: No types known;
Carcharias (Prionodon) bleekeri
Syntype: MNHN: A-9660 MNHN: A-9584
Galeolamna (Galeolamnoides) isobel
Holotype: AMS: IB.1493; AMS: IB.1493.001;
Squalus spallanzani
XXXX: No types known;

Description :

Citation: Carcharhinus sorrah (Valenciennes in Müller & Henle, 1839): In: Database of modern sharks, rays and chimaeras,, World Wide Web electronic publication, Version 07/2024

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Carcharhinus sorrah (Müller & Henle, 1838), female, 98.7 cm TL, tail width: 17.3 cm, weight: 7.863 kg, Bangladesh © G. M. MASUM BILLAH, Program Coordinator- Marine Mega-Fauna & Fisheries, Wildlife Conservation Society- Bangladesh Program (
Common names
spa Tiburón rabo manchado, fra \(T\) Requin blanc, fra \(T\) Requin tacheté, fra \(T\) Requin à queue tachetée, eng Black-tip shark, eng Blacktip shark, eng Grey shark, eng School shark, eng Sorrah, eng Sorrah shark, eng Spot-tail shark, eng Spot-tail whaler, eng Spottail shark, eng West Australian whaler shark, por Marracho rabo manchado

Short Description
Field Marks/Diagnostic Features after Compagno, 1984 [517]: A small to fairly large, spindleshaped grey shark with moderately long rounded snout, fairly large eyes, oblique-cusped serrated teeth in both jaws, upper teeth with strong cusplets, usually 12/12 rows of anterolateral teeth, an interdorsal ridge, small pectoral fins, a moderate-sized first dorsal with a short rear tip and a small, low second dorsal with a long rear tip, and conspicuous large black tips on the ventral caudal lobe, second dorsal and pectoral fins.
Diagnostic Features: A small to moderately large, fairly stocky and spindle-shaped species (up to about 1.6 m). Snout moderately long and pointed; internarial width 1.3 to 1.5 times in preoral length; eyes circular and moderately large, their length 1.7 to 2.4% of total length; anterior nasal flaps narrow, elongated and nipple-shaped; conspicuously enlarged; gill slits fairly short, the third 2.1 to 3.3% of total length and slightly less than a third of first dorsal base; usually 12/12 rows of anteroposterior teeth in each jaw half but varying from 11 to 13/11 to 12; upper teeth with narrow, strongly serrated, oblique moderately high cusps, and crown feet with coarse proximal serrations and strong distal cusplets; lower teeth with oblique narrow serrated cusps and transverse roots, but no cusplets. A low interdorsal ridge present. First dorsal fin large and falcate, with a pointed or narrowly rounded apex and posterior margin curving ventrally from fin apex; origin of first dorsal fin varying from slightly behind to slightly in front of the pectoral free rear tips; inner margin of first dorsal moderately long, slightly less than half the dorsal base; second dorsal fin small and low, its height 1.5 to 2.2% of total length, its inner margin long and 2 to 2.6 times height; origin of second dorsal 1/3 of anal base behind anal origin; pectoral fins fairly small, falcate, with narrowly rounded or pointed apices, length of anterior margins about 16 to 18% of total length; 153 to 175 total vertebral centra, 66 to 79 precaudal centra. Body medium grey above white below; a conspicuous and large black tip on the pectorals, second dorsal, and ventral caudal lobe, but first dorsal only with black edge at most; a conspicuous white band on flank.

Indo-West Pacific: Red Sea and East Africa (including Madagascar, Mauritius and Seychelles) to the Philippines, north to China, south to Australia. Also from Vanikolo Island (Santa Cruz Islands) and the Solomon Islands. Possibly occurring in the Gulf of Aden, Gulf of Oman and Sri Lanka [544]; Bangladesh (see image) Source:

Human uses
fisheries: minor commercial; price category: high; price reliability: reliable: based on ex-vessel price for this species

Viviparous, with a yolk-sac placenta [517]. Pups, average 3, range 1-8, are produced in January after a 10-month gestation period. Average length at birth is 50 cm TL. Length increases by about 25 cm during the first year. These sharks breed once each year [4209]. Distinct pairing with embrace [17086]. Feeding depth changes with shark size [4209]. Occurs throughout the water column, but mainly in midwater or near the surface [1388].

Size / Weight / Age
160 cm TL (male/unsexed; [17644]); max. published weight: 28.0 kg (Ref. 6390); max. reported age: 8 years (Ref. 6390)

reef-associated; brackish; marine; depth range 0 - 140 m [20218]

shark-references Species-ID=833;

Parasites (arranged by Jürgen Pollerspöck)
  • Calicotyle cutmorei Kritsky & Chisholm, 2020 [29167]

  • Anthobothrium afsanae Sadeghi Vilni & Haseli, 2024 [32555]
  • Anthobothrium barsami Sadeghi Vilni & Haseli, 2024 [32555]
  • Callitetrarhynchus gracilis (Rudolphi, 1819) Pintner, 1931 [15730]
  • Cathetocephalus australis Schmidt & Beveridge, 1990 [16197]
  • Cathetocephalus sp. [13130]
  • Discocephalum sp. [13130]
  • Mixonybelinia edwinlintoni (Dollfus, 1960) [16112]
  • Otobothrium australe Palm, 2004 [17826]
  • Otobothrium carcharidis (Shipley & Hornell, 1906) [24083] [15730] [17826] [17826] [21816]
  • Phoreiobothrium sorrahcola Ganjgah & Haseli, 2020 [28273]
  • Reimeriella varioacantha Palm, Morales-Avila, Galvan-Magana & Haseli, 2020 [28319]
  • Scyphophyllidium christopheri (Cutmore, Bennett, Miller & Cribb, 2017) [25840]
  • Scyphophyllidium floraformis (Southwell, 1912) [26667] [16443]
  • Scyphophyllidium sinclairtaylori (Cutmore, Bennett, Miller & Cribb, 2017) [25840]

  • Staphylorchis cymatodes (Johnston, 1913) [11242]

  • Serrasentis sagittifer (Linton, 1889) [27561]

  • Pontobdella macrothela (Schimarda, 1861) [28595]