The genus name Centroscyllium is Greek, kentron meaning "sting" and skylla meaning "a kind of shark". This dogfish is the largest of the Etmopteridae family, measuring anywhere from 60-75 cm (23-30 in) long. The smallest specimens measured 16.5 cm for males and 17.5 cm for females.
How deep-watered are we talking about?
They’re mostly seen on the outer continental shelves and slopes, at depths of 180-2,250 m (590-7,380 ft). Specimens have been collected as deep as 1,600 m (5,250 ft) in water as low as 1°C (34°F), but most specimens are caught at 550-1,000 m (1,800-3,280 ft) in temperatures of about 3.5-4.5 °C (38-40°F).
They are all over the place!
As for predators, those possibly include large fish or sharks that are in the same area as black dogfish. Parasites include Albionella fabricii n. sp., around the gills of these sharks off of Newfoundland.
Black dogfish are often caught as bycatch for deep-sea commercial fisheries in the North Atlantic, but have no value and are usually thrown overboard.
The population seems to be stable in the North Atlantic, and therefore the IUCN has listed the species as Least Concern, but assessed as Near Threatened in the Northeastern Atlantic.
Did you know about these sharks before?