Traceable Species

Spiny Dogfish

Rock salmon, Spurdog, Mud shark, Cape shark, Rock shark, Codshark, Thorndog, Piked dogfish

Spiny Dogfish

A small schooling shark, Spiny dogfish are long lived and slow growing, with an estimated life span of 30 to 40 years. This life starts when females produce eggs that hatch within their body. After a gestation period that can last from 18 months to two years – the longest gestation of any other vertebrate – the female then bears live young, producing a litter of between two and 15 “pups.” The number of pups is dependent on the size of the female, but the average litter runs to five or six. These are normally born in the warmer waters of the northeastern United States and Nova Scotia in the Atlantic Ocean and in sounds and inland waterways in the Pacific Northwest. Sexual maturity in males is reached at a total length of about two feet (64 cm) and 10 years of age. Females reach their sexual maturity around 16 years. 

Spiny Dogfish

Food Info Spiny Dogfish


  • Colour: bright white
  • Texture: boneless, lean white meat with a firm texture and large flakes
  • Flavour: sweet, mild flavour, although stronger in flavour when not bled and stored properly
  • Perfect serve: Thanks to the absence of bones, this is an excellent source of protein for children (and adults) who don’t like the bones so often found in fish, no matter how carefully filleted. Lightly battered and fried, it is an excellent alternative to fish sticks, for example. Aside from its common use in traditional fish and chips, spiny dogfish is also firm enough to make excellent kebabs for the grill or a chunky fish stew with tomatoes, onions and herbs.
Species Range
Spiny Dogfish range Source:
Rock salmon
Mud shark
Cape shark
Rock shark
Piked dogfish
Spiny Dogfish by Bottom Trawl (USA) Jan 01 - Dec 31

Spiny dogfish are the world’s most abundant shark species. They tend to travel and feed in large schools like packs of hunting dogs—hence the name “dogfish.” They also have a mildly poisonous spine, used mostly in defense, in front of their two dorsal fins. They can be found in waters all around the world, but prefer temperate waters at depths from 164 to 820 feet (50 to 200 metres).

Spiny dogfish are brown or grey on top, fading to white or grayish-white on their bellies. They also have distinctive irregular white spots on the top or sides of their body. They resemble other sharks in their pointed noses and slender, streamlined bodies. Their skeleton is made of cartilage instead of bones, making their boneless, white fillets popular in British fish and chips.

Fishing Methods

{'fisheries': [<License: Incidental Catch by Hook & Line>], 'gear': <Gear: Bottom Longline with Hooks>}

Bottom Longline with Hooks

This fishery uses a bottom longline that is baited with hooks and anchored to the ocean floor. A longline can be from 1 to 3 miles (1.6 to 5 km) long and have up to 2,000 hooks.


{'fisheries': [<License: Spiny Dogfish by Bottom Trawl (USA)>], 'gear': <Gear: Bottom Trawl>}

Bottom Trawl

This fishery uses a large cone-shaped net that is dragged along the seafloor to catch fish. As the net is towed at low speed, hydrodynamic forces push two "otter boards" outwards opening the mouth of the net and capturing fish in its path.


Featured Harvester Bernie Berry

Mangrove Crab Harvester

Canavieiras, Brazil

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