Squalus acanthias, is a smaller shark that lives in large parts of the world, but not around the poles and in the tropics. It is mainly found in coastal areas, especially bays and estuaries, but is also able to dive to a depth of about 1,400 meters.
The common dogfish is gray with small, light spots and is named after the two spines, which sit in front of the dorsal fins, and are used in self-defense. As the only one of its kind, the common porbeagle excretes a neurotoxin in its spines. The poison is not life-threatening for humans, but can cause great pain.
Normal length is up to 1.6 meters with a weight of 9 kg and lives for up to 75 years. It gives birth to 1-20 live young at a time, each of which varies in length from 18 to 30 cm. Sold by fishmongers under the name king eel.
Despite its widespread use, the dogfish is threatened by overfishing. This is related to a very long generation time, as the female only becomes sexually mature when she is around 12-15 years old, and her pregnancy lasts almost two years. There is thus a great risk that it will be caught before it has time to give birth to new young. The dogfish is assessed as vulnerable on both the international and the Danish red list.