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Angel sharks, numbfishes, electric rays and guitar fishes of North Carolina

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North Carolina Academy of Science.
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ncas-126-04-01 135..137 ANGEL SHARKS, NUMBFISHES, ELECTRIC RAYS AND GUITAR FISHES OF NORTH CAROLINA FRANK J. SCHWARTZ Institute of Marine Sciences, University of North Carolina, Morehead City, NC 28557-3209 Abstract: Ocurrences, captures, distributions and sizes of five dorsal-ventrally flattened elasmobranchs are recorded in North Carolina waters: Angel shark, numbfish, torpedo electric ray, deep-sea electric ray and guitar fishes. All but the torpedo electric ray were smaller than previously reported. Torpedo ray disc widths (DW) exceeded the 98 cm DW known. Angel Sharks and numbfish were the most abundant captured. Good capture sites were at the knuckle buoy and the scallop grounds off Beaufort, NC. Numbfish entered Core and Bogue Sounds, Angel Sharks entered Beaufort Inlet. All five species remain poorly known in North Carolina. INTRODUCTION Angel sharks, numbfishes, torpedo rays, deep-sea blind electric rays and guitar fishes are poorly known dorso-ventrally flattened elasmobranchs frequenting western Atlantic waters (Compagno 1999; Schwartz 2003). I review each species’ occurrences, captures, distributions, and sizes in North Carolinian waters. OBSERVATIONS Squatina dumeril Lesueur, 1818. Atlantic angel sharks (Order Squatiniformes: Family Squatinidae (A 55 cm long species (Fig. 1) are known in the western Atlantic from Massachusetts to Florida, Gulf of Mexico, Cuba, Nicaragua, Jamacia and Venzeula (Bigelow and Schroe- der 1948; McEachran and Fechhelm 1998) in inshore to 390 m deep waters (Campagno 2002). Angel sharks were noted abundant off Cape Lookout, NC as early as 1904 and 1905 (Smith 1907; Coles 1915; Gudger 1913a,b; Radcliffe 1916). Bullis and Thompson (1965) collected angel sharks at Combat station 383, 108 m and Silver Bay station 1,268, 54 m deep. Since then little has been known of angel sharks in North Carolinian waters. Fifty-nine Angel sharks have been collected between 1962 and 2009 from Oregon Inlet south to Maso

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