Aladdin is the seasonal name given by Deep Sea World to a new-born shark reckoned to bear more than a passing resemblance to an oriental rug.
At a full grown length of just two and a half feet, the “ornately patterned” Arabian Carpet Shark won’t ever feature in any new Jaws-style epic.
But because the species could soon be threatened in the wild staff at the South Queensferry aquarium are delighted they’ve notched up another successful birth in captivity.
Carpet sharks, which can survive for some time out of water, feed mainly on smaller fish, crabs, shrimps and squid – and are said to be very hardy.
Females lay clutches of up to four eggs, which they attach to rocks and other outcrops. The eggs take up to 80 days to hatch, but despite measuring only four inches in length baby sharks can fend for themselves from birth.
Deep Sea World’s Kerry Myers said: “Aladdin is doing really well and looks to be in excellent condition.
“If all goes according to plan he will be able to join his parents and older brothers and sisters in our tropical rockpool display once he has grown a little bigger.”
She added: “This particular type of shark is becoming increasingly threatened in the wild so the fact they are breeding so successfully here in captivity is good news.”
The biggest threats faced by Arabian Carpet Sharks in the wild include being accidentally caught in fishing nets, and destruction of natural habitat, and the species is now designated “Near Threatened” by the International Union for Conservation of Nature.