Loxodon macrorhinus (Müller & Henle, 1839)
Loxodon macrorhinus (Müller & Henle, 1839)

Genus: ,

Scientific Name: Loxodon macrorhinus

English Name: Sliteye shark

Creole Name: Landonny

French Name: Requin épée

IUCN Red List Status: Least Concern (LC)


Dorsal spines: 3; Dorsal rays: 25-27; Anal rays: 24-25.

Greyish to greenish brown dorsally, with small pale spots. Whitish ventrally with yellow spots that can coalesce to form a reticulum particularly posteriorly.  3 large 
oval white spots along the back and a small one dorsally on caudal peduncle; a broad white streak often on side of body posterior to upper end of gill opening. White 
blotches and mid-lateral stripe can disappear with growth.  An oblique groove before the eye; large bony scales behind gill opening. Caudal peduncle depressed, slender 
and tapering. Yellow bands on dorsal and anal fins. Caudal fin, yellow with white bars and stripes pattern and diffuse black margin, double emarginate, lobes longer 
with growth.


Maturity: Lm unknown. Range unknown. Max Length: 60cm TL

Habitat and Ecology:

Reef associated. Inhabits mud and silt sand bottoms (depth 7-350m), usually 7-100m depth on sand, sponge, and weed bottoms. Feeds on benthic animals, including crabs, 
molluscs and sea urchins. Juveniles in sheltered coastal bays and estuaries.

Fishery Status:

This species is not protected or subject to fishery regulations. It is caught in both the fish trap and hand line fisheries and is, along with Sufflamen fraenatum, 
the most commonly caught triggerfish in the artisanal fishery.




Abalistes stellaris is a synonym for this species.


Bray, D.J. (2018).  Abalistes stellatus in Fishes of Australia, http://fishesofaustralia.net.au/home/species/759 (30/10/18). 
Froese, R. & D. Pauly. Eds. (2018). FishBase https://www.fishbase.de/summary/abalistes-stellatus  (30/10/18)
Matsuura, K. (2015). Taxonomy and systematics of tetraodontiform fishes: a review focusing primarily on progress in the period from 1980 to 2014. Ichthyol Res (2015) 
62:72–113 DOI 10.1007/s10228-014-0444-5  
Matsuura, K. & Motomura, H. (2015). Abalistes stellatus. The IUCN Red List 2015: e.T193587A56996805. https://www.iucnredlist.org/species/193587/56996805 (18/06/22). .
Matsuura K, Yoshino T (2004). A new triggerfish of the genus Abalistes (Tetraodontiformes: Balistidae) from the western Pacific. Rec Aust Mus 56:189-194
Smith, M & Heemstra, P Eds. (1999). Smiths’ Sea Fishes Edition 6. Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 10.1007/978-3-642-82858-4


Nevill, J.E.G. & Mason-Parker, C. (2019). Abalistes stellatus, Starry triggerfish. Seychelles Seatizens. www.seatizens.sc. https://seatizens.sc/species/abalistes-stellatus-anonymous-1798/  (updated 18/06/22).

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Small, slender shark with a long narrow snout and very large eyes with posterior notches. Light grey to light grey-brown dorsally fading on the flanks to white ventrally. Fins and nose with pinkish tinge when alive or freshly caught and fins with translucent edges. D1 origin posterior to pectoral fin free edges and D2 posterior to anal fin.

Fins: D1 triangular with dark leading edge. Origin posterior to pectoral free tips. D2 low with long free rear tip. Origin posterior to anal fin. Interdorsal ridge absent or very slight. Pectorals falcate with pale or translucent trailing rear edge. Origin between third and fourth gill slit. Pelvic pale or translucent. Anal pale, anterior to and slightly larger than D2. Caudal pink colouration in freshly caught specimens otherwise pale, except for darker edges in some specimens and translucent trailing edge.

Head: Long narrow snout with very large eyes that exhibit characteristic posterior notches. Short gill slits. Anterior portion of snout exhibits darker shade of colouration (pinkish colour in life). Short upper and lower labial furrows. Triangular oblique teeth without serrations.


Born 40-45cm TL. Mature: Male 62-66cm TL, Female 75-80cm TL, Maximum 99cm TL.

Habitat and Ecology:

Insular and continental shelves in shallow water (depth 7-100m, usually7-80m). Eats small teleosts and invertebrates. Vivaparous 2-4 pups, usually 2, per litter and reproduce annually.

Fishery Status:

This species is not protected. It is however illegal to fish for sharks with nets (Fisheries Act, Reg 16.c). It is caught in the hand line fishery. L. macrorhinus was identified as the most widespread shark on the Mahé plateau during trawling experiments in the 1960s and 1970s. The species appears to have a distinct sexual segregation either in range or behaviour because it is  rare to catch a female. L. macrorhinus is occasionally seen amongst the catch at the Victoria market.


There is strong anecdotal evidence to indicate a significant decline in the population of this species on the Mahé plateau.  


Ebert, D.A. et al (2013). Sharks of the World – A fully illustrated guide. Wild Nature press ISBN 978-0-9573946-0-5

Fisheries Act 2014. Prohibition of net fishing of sharks, Reg. 16c of 1st August 1998. (Carried over from the 1986 Fisheries Act as per Fisheries Act 2014 para 79: Savings and Transitional provisions).

Froese, R. and D. Pauly. Eds. 2018. FishBase. https://www.fishbase.se/summary/Loxodon-macrorhinus (27/05/19).

Nevill, J.E.G. et al (2015). An identification guide for the sharks of the Seychelles Artisanal Fishery.

Simpfendorfer, C.A. & Stevens, J. 2003. Loxodon macrorhinus. The IUCN Red List 2003: e.T41831A10575744. http://dx.doi.org/10.2305/IUCN.UK.2003.RLTS.T41831A10575744.en. (27/05/19).


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