New ghostshark species identified off Southern California

According to an article at, scientists have identified a new species of ghostshark, which is actually classified in the chimera family. The newly identified species, Hydrolagus melanophasma, was described by Doug Long (California Academy of Sciences) as, “a big weird looking freaky thing.” The species also has an organ extending from its forehead called a tentaculum. The tentaculum was described as a “club with spike,” which some presume is used in the mating process. While the species was recently identified, it was "discovered" long before in the sense that specimens of the species existed at the Scripps Oceanographic Institute and simply had not been identified. To read the entire article and see a photo of Hydrolagus melanophasma, head on over to

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