Jake Davies
British Wildlife 34.2 November 2022

Conservation of the Angelshark in Welsh waters

A master of camouflage, the critically endangered Angelshark is a fascinating resident in the shallow coastal water off Wales. Here, Jake Davies and Joanna Barker describe the ecology of the Angleshark and its distribution in the north-east Atlantic, and introduce the Angel Shark Project: Wales, a conservation project that aims to safeguard Angelsharks in Welsh waters.

In shallow coastal waters off Wales, hidden under sand or mud, lives one of the world’s rarest and most unusual species of shark. Angelsharks Squatina squatina, which can reach a length of 2.4m (Compagno et al. 2005), are masters of camouflage, their skin coloured perfectly to match the soft sediments in which they bury their flat­tened bodies by using large and powerful pectoral fins.

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