Port Jackson Shark (Heterodontus portusjacksoni)

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Port Jackson Shark

Heterodontus portusjacksoni-1859.jpg
Port Jackson Shark

Heterodontus portusjacksoni

3785 Litres (1000 US G.)

152.4-167.6cm (60-66 ")


8.1 - 8.4

17.8-22.2°C (64 -72 °F)

8-12 °d

1:1 M:F

Pellet Foods
Live Foods
Other (See article)

15-25 years



Additional names

Port Jackson Shark

Additional scientific names

Squalus portusjacksoni, Cestracion heterodontus, Heterondotus bonaespei

Origin[edit | edit source]

Western Pacific: southern Australia (including Western Australia) and one record from New Zealand.

Sexing[edit | edit source]

Mature females are larger than mature males, males have visible claspers. Not known to breed in captivity. Males become sexually mature around 8 to 10 years of age and females around 11 to 14 years of age.

Tank compatibility[edit | edit source]

This is a predatory shark that will kill and eat any invertebrate or fish it can catch. Best in large species tanks.

Diet[edit | edit source]

Can be difficult to feed and may only take live food. After time may be weaned on to shellfish, chopped crustaceans, squid and shrimp.

Feeding regime[edit | edit source]

Feed once a day.

Environment specifics[edit | edit source]

This fish requires an exceptionally large tank and is best only reserved for those who can maintain public-aquarium sized tanks, and with the experience to maintain the correct water quality as this fast-growing shark is sensitive to changes.

Behaviour[edit | edit source]

A voracious hunter with sharp teeth to match, generally harmless to larger fish or human hands unless provoked, it can inflict a nasty bite.
Port Jackson sharks have the ability to eat and breathe at the same time. This ability is unusual for sharks which mostly need to swim with the mouth open to force water over the gills. The Port Jackson shark can pump water into the first enlarged gill slit and out through the other four gill slits. By pumping water across the gills, the shark does not need to move to breathe. It can lie on the bottom for long periods of time.

Identification[edit | edit source]

An elongate shark with a slender tail and large head. The eyes are located near the top of the head, while the mouth is almost downward pointing with a rounded nose. It is brown in colour with a paler belly and with black bands and markings irregularly down the body. The Port Jackson has one spine on each of its two dorsal fins which can cause serious injury.

Pictures[edit | edit source]

External links[edit | edit source]