Macquarie University
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The ecology and biology of wobbegong sharks (Genus Orectolobus) in relation to the commercial fishery in New South Wales, Australia

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posted on 2022-03-28, 20:11 authored by Charlie Huveneers
In New South Wales, Australia, wobbegong sharks (Orectolobidae) have been commercially targetted by the Ocean Trap and Line Fishery since 1991. A catch decrease of ca. 50% in a decade lead to concern over the sustainability of the fishery and to wobbegongs being listed as vulnerable in NSW under the World Conservation Union Red List assessment. The aim of this research was to investigate wobbegong biology and ecology in relation to its fishery to provide essential data and information for sustainable management of the woggegong fishery. Biological data was obtained from 904 wobbegongs collected from commercial fishing boats, using setlines and lobset pots and by scuba diving. previously two species of wobbegongs were known to occur in NSW: the spotted wobbegong (Orectolobus maculatus) and the ornate wobbegong (O. ornatus). This study discovered a new species (O. halei) described as a subspecies by Whitley (1940), but which had been syonymised with O> ornatus due to a lack of taxonomic investigation.


Table of Contents

General introduction -- Redescription of two species of wobbegongs (Chondrichthyes: Orectolobidae) with elevation of Orectolobus halei Whitley 1940 to species level -- Using recreational scuba-divers to survey the relative abundance and distribution of wobbegong sharks (Family: Orectolobidae) in New South Wales, Australia -- Observations of localised movements and residence time of wobbegong sharks (Orectolobus halei) at Fish Rock, New South Wales, Australia -- Length-frequency distribution, length-length, mass-mass and mass-length relationships of wobbegong sharks (Genus Orectolobus) commercially fished in New South Wales, Australia -- Quantitative diet assessment of wobbegong sharks (Genus Orectolobus) in New South Wales, Australia -- Reproductive synchrony of three sympatric species of wobbegong shark (Genus Orectolobus) in New South Wales, Australia -- Age and growth of wobbegong sharks (Genus Orectolobus) in New South Wales, Australia.


Bibliography: p. 267-303 Thesis by publication.

Degree Type

Thesis PhD


Thesis (PhD), Macquarie University (Division of Environmental & Life Sciences, Graduate School of the Environment)

Department, Centre or School

Graduate School of the Environment

Year of Award



Copyright Charlie Huveneers 2007. Copyright disclaimer:




New South Wales


307 p. ill., some col., maps

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