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Sixgill Cowshark

marine life of Namibia

Introduction: There are 4 species of cowshark in southern African waters and the sixgill cowshark (Hexanchus griseus) is so called because of the six gills on either side of the body. It has a mouth under the head and large, comb-like teeth. They have a long, slender body with a single, square-shaped dorsal fin, a wide blunt snout and shiny green eyes. It also has pectoral fins, and the long caudal fin has dark tips.

Distribution: They are not often seen as they tend to frequent the bottom of deep water, but some do swim to the surface at night if you happen to be skinny-dipping at Swakopmund one pleasant summer's evening.

Diet: Mostly bony fish, ray, other sharks and whalemeat. They are also partial to crabs, squid and octopus.

Colouring: A brown-grey body, with light-coloured stripes down the side.

Breeding: Females may give birth to between 20 and 100 pups at one time.

Size: Average length is around 4.8m.

Marine Life | Namibia

  • Namibia Marine Life: Spotted-gulley-shark
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Accommodation in Namibia