View all available
Halmahera Epaulette Shark
Shark Picture Database
Names: Halmahera epaulette shark, Halmahera walking shark.
cylindrical, eel-like body. Well developed pectoral and pelvic fins on
fore-body. Two equally sized dorsal fins on rear-body. Tail long and straight
with upper and lower caudal lobes on underside. Distinct sub-terminal notch.
Body coloration tan to reddish brown with concentrations of dark spots forming
broken bands along the torso and tail. Three large dark spots behind gills; the
largest being elongated or U shaped and partially outlined in white on the
lower side. Head orange-brown with small dark spots on nose and forehead. Two
larger dark spots on lower cheeks. Ventrum pale.
68cm but probably attains greater length (personal observation).
Shallow coral reefs. From 3 to 10m.
Endemic to the
Maluku Islands in central-northern Indonesia. Found near Ternate Island and Halmahera
by day under corals
venturing out at sunset to feed.
Swims or walks along on its flexible pectoral and pelvic fins. Wriggles through
gaps in coral in search of prey or to seek protection.
Only described in 2013, the Halmahera epaulette shark has not yet been evaluated
by the IUCN.
This may be the only epaulette shark within the Maluku Islands but the Dive
Masters at Weda Resort mentioned that they sometimes see a different one or
perhaps just a different looking animal based on changes during maturity.
Reaction to divers: Usually seen at night. Seeks
cover when caught in a diver'
s spotlight. Some animals are more tolerant of
s lights than others.
logistics: The experienced dive masters at Weda Resort have a good track
record for finding Halmahera Epaulette Sharks which they call Walking Sharks.
We found multiple sharks on two out of three night dives during one week of
Allen, G.R., M.V. Erdmann and C.L. Dudgeon,
a new species of Bamboo Shark (Hemiscylliidae) from Indonesia. aqua,
International Journal 19(3):123-136. (Ref. 94061)