Summary and Info
The skeleton of cartilaginous fishes is notoriously difficult to prepare, and the literature dealing with the subject is extremely rare compared to other vertebrate groups. As a result, chondrichthyan skeletal specimens held in museums and other scientific institutions are often limited to isolated sets of jaws, taxidermised specimens and small individuals preserved whole in fluid. However, skeletal characters are heavily relied upon in several taxonomical and phylogenetical analyses, highlighting the importance of properly prepared skeletal specimens in research collections. The relevant literature is briefly reviewed herein, with a proposal for a new and simple protocol involving limited and easily obtainable chemicals,for the quick preparation of clean and durable chondrichthyan skeletal specimens. Various features of thechondrichthyan skeleton are also discussed, along with the microstructural effects of the chemicals involved in the protocol.