After a genus native solely around Indonesia and Australia, sharks of this genus populate many areas of the Pacific and Indian Ocean. The genus swellsharks of the family catsharks (Scyliorhinidae) is named after their ability to inflate their belly to about double or triple its regular size like pufferfish do, as described here. Almost all of their names reflect that, for instance todays Balloon shark (Cephaloscyllium sufflans). This species lives solely off southern Mozambique and KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa.
As bottom dwelling sharks Balloon sharks live over sandy and muddy flats on the continental shelf and uppermost slope at depths between 130 and 1,970 ft – 40 and 600 m. Juveniles of this species are often encountered as bycatch of bottom trawling fisheries and are discarded. Nevertheless, the IUCN considered this species as Least Concern, as it seems that adult sharks inhabit deeper regions and also lay their egg cases there (they are oviparous), so for now the population is healthy.