Animal Species:Porcupine Ray, Urogymnus asperrimus (Bloch & Schneider, 1801)

The strange-looking Porcupine Ray is covered with plate-like tenticles and sharp thorns.

Porcupine Ray off Cairns

Blair Carter © Blair Carter

Standard Common Name

Porcupine Ray

Alternative Name/s

It has also been called the Roughskin Stingaree, Rough-skinned Ray, Solander’s Ray and Thorny Ray.

Identification

The Porcupine Ray has an oval-shaped disc that is covered with plate-like tenticles and sharp thorns. The tail lacks stinging spines and skin folds. The fish is brown to grey above and white below. The tail tip is dark.

Size range

It grows to at least 1 m in disc width.

Distribution

The species occurs in tropical inshore waters of Eastern Atlantic and the Indo-west and Central Pacific.

In Australia it is known from off north-western Western Australia, around the tropical north of the country and south on the east coast to the central coast of Queensland.

The map below shows the Australian distribution of the species based on public sightings and specimens in Australian Museums. Click on the map for detailed information.  Source: Atlas of Living Australia.

Urogymnus+asperrimus

Distribution by collection data

Ozcam map of Porcupine Ray specimens in the Australian Museums.

What does this mean?

Habitat

It is a benthic species that is usually found on sandy or rubbly seabeds.

Classification

Species:
asperrimus
Genus:
Urogymnus
Family:
Dasyatidae
Order:
Myliobatiformes
Class:
Chondrichthyes
Subphylum:
Vertebrata
Phylum:
Chordata
Kingdom:
Animalia

What does this mean?

References

  1. Hoese, D.F., Bray, D.J., Paxton, J.R. & G.R. Allen. 2006. Fishes. In Beesley, P.L. & A. Wells. (eds) Zoological Catalogue of Australia. Volume 35. ABRS & CSIRO Publishing: Australia. parts 1-3, pages 1-2178.
  2. Last, P.R. & J.D. Stevens. 1994. Sharks and Rays of Australia. CSIRO. Pp. 513.
  3. Last, P.R. & Compagno, L.J.V. 1999. Dasyatidae in Carpenter, K.E. & V.H. Niem (Eds). FAO Species Identification Guide for Fishery Purposes. The Living Marine Resources of the Western Central Pacific. Volume 3. Batoid fishes, chimaeras and bony fishes part 1 (Elopidae to Linophrynidae). FAO, Rome. Pp. iii-vi, 1398-2068.

 


Mark McGrouther , Collection Manager, Ichthyology
Last Updated:

Tags fishes, ichthyology, Porcupine Ray, Urogymnus asperrimus, Dasyatidae, ray, Roughskin Stingaree, Rough-skinned Ray, Solander’s Ray, Thorny Ray, adult, marine, > 1m, tropical water, inshore water, sandy seabeds, brown, grey, white underside,