Identity card

LATIN NAME: Mustelus asterias

FAMILY: Triakidae

PHYLUM: Chordata

CLASS: Chondrichthyes

This is a grey shark with white dots on its back. It has a more flexible body than other sharks.

The starry smooth-hound shark lives in coastal waters at depths of between 5 and 200 metres, on gravel or sandy bottoms.

The young feed mainly on crustaceans. Adults move on to fish.

They measure between 100 and 150 cm and can weigh up to 4.8 kg.

  • Distribution :

    In the wild, they are found in the Northeastern Atlantic, from the Shetland Islands down to Morocco; they also live in the Mediterranean Sea.
  • IUCN Status :

    Least concern. However, starry smooth-hound sharks are fished commercially and so it is recommended to reduce the quantities caught in order to maintain the population.

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Did you know ?

Find out more about the Starry smooth-hound shark
Biomimetics: the shark has inspired the creation of some innovative technologies. Its skin has been used as a model for creating antibacterial, hydro/aerodynamic and antifouling clothing; its fins have helped to improve the stability of airplanes thanks to “sharklets” and the shape of its tail has served as inspiration for tidal steam generators.

It is sold by fishmongers under the generic name of rock salmon.

The starry smooth-hound shark has a more flexible body than most other sharks and can make very tight turns. It has a patchwork of blunt teeth. Starry smooth-hound sharks can also live in small groups, sometimes together with other sharks such as school sharks and common smooth-hound sharks.

The starry smooth-hound shark is aplacental viviparous, meaning that the foetus derives its nutrition from a yolk sac. Gestation lasts between 11 and 13 months. Females can give birth to around 20 young.





Crédits photo du bandeau : © Thomas Tranain
Crédits photo de la galerie : © Thomas Tranain

Activities AT NAUSICAA


Every day, there are events focused on Nausicaa’s main species. With training and feeding sessions and talks on life in Europe’s largest aquarium, your visit will be a rich and entertaining experience!
Learn about the life of fishes, hear some surprising stories and enjoy the antics of some amazing animals.

Meet our 58 000 animals