- Small shark, only growing to 4 feet long
- Named for the prominent spines, or “horns”, in front of its dorsal fins
- Shades of tan and gray, with a blunt snout
- Prominent ridges over eyes
- Prominent black spots over entire body
- From central California to Baja California
- Found in kelp forests and rocky reefs
- Hide in caves and recesses during the day and hunt at night
- Prefer water less than 40 feet deep
- Crustaceans, sea urchins, small fish, molluscs
- Other sharks and large fish
- These sharks have some of the most unique eggs in the animal kingdom. Their egg cases are spirals, which the females that they wedge into crevices; the spiral keeps the egg from drifting away. The shark pup inside the egg case will take about 6-9 months to hatch.
- To crack the shells of their prey, the horn shark generates the highest known bite force relative to its size of any shark
- Horn sharks are hunted for their spines, which are turned into jewelry. They are also often caught as bycatch in fisheries.
Sources: Monterey Bay Aquarium; Huber et al. 2005; Florida Museum
Photo: David R. Andrew