Speckled Carpet Sharks (Hemiscyllium trispeculare) are a small benthic shark species native to northwestern Australia. It’s shape and size are similar to the Epaulette Shark (Hemiscyllium ocellatum) with a long body, small round paired pectoral and pelvic fins and a maximum reported size of only 31 inches. The pattern of the Speckled Carpet Shark consists of densely spaced, fine spots covering their entire head and body. Overall color is tan with dark brown saddles composed of darker clusters of spots. Their characteristic ocelli or “epaulettes” are well defined and bordered by a white halo and a dark patch to the posterior.
Speckled Carpet Sharks are most active at night and typically remain stationary under a shelter during the day. Rather than constantly swimming around the tank, they are bottom dwellers that may swim in short bursts but they prefer to “walk” around on their paired fins. In nature they exhibit this behavior walking between tide pools as they hunt for their preferred prey items: small fish, crustaceans, cephalopods, mollusks and polychaete worms. Speckled Carpet Sharks will only eat food that will fit in their mouth, they don’t tear up prey in the “traditional” shark sense. Rather, they need bite sized pieces of food which they chew thoroughly before swallowing.
We consider the Speckled Carpet Shark to be an expert only animal. They must be provided with a low stress environment with limited disruption, an easy to consume diet with multivitamin supplementation and excellent water quality. Despite their relatively small size and relaxed disposition, a full-sized Speckled Carpet Shark will need to be housed in a tank with a minimum size of 200 gallons and carefully chosen tank mates. We strongly urge anyone looking to keep a shark to thoroughly research the species prior to purchase. This is a long-term commitment!
Our Speckled Carpet Shark pups are sold after they begin to reliably consume a readily available diet including large mysis shrimp, chopped squid, shrimp and salmon.