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Rajella paucispinosa  Weigmann, Stehmann & Thiel, 2014

Sparsely-thorned skate
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Image of Rajella paucispinosa (Sparsely-thorned skate)
Rajella paucispinosa
Male picture by Weigmann, S.

Classification / Names Common names | Synonyms | Catalog of Fishes (gen., sp.) | ITIS | CoL | WoRMS | Cloffa

Elasmobranchii (sharks and rays) > Rajiformes (Skates and rays) > Rajidae (Skates)
Etymology: Rajella: Latin, raja, -ae = a sting ray (Raja sp.) (Ref. 45335);  paucispinosa: Name from Llatin 'paucus' for few and 'spinosus' for thorny, referring to the very reduced thorn pattern on the dorsal surface for a Rajella species.

Environment / Climate / Range Ecology

Marine; bathypelagic; depth range ? - 1230 m (Ref. 96993).   Tropical

Distribution Countries | FAO areas | Ecosystems | Occurrences | Point map | Introductions | Faunafri

Western Indian Ocean off South Mozambique.

Size / Weight / Age

Maturity: Lm ?  range ? - ? cm
Max length : 47.1 cm TL male/unsexed; (Ref. 96993)

Short description Morphology | Morphometrics

This small species of the genus is distinguished by the following characters: disc is an evenly inverse heart-shaped with broadly rounded outer corners and with body length to mid-vent shorter than tail length from mid-vent; length of preorbital snout 10.9% and distance between first gill slits 14.1% of TL; large orbits with horizontal diameter 1.4 times interorbital width; its dorsal surface is almost completely covered with dermal denticles; the tail with large and coarse, densely set spinules as well as sharp, hooked thornlets that are not much larger than spinules; one small, blunt pre- and postorbital thorn on each side, one small nuchal thorn and one small right scapular thorn (left one not detectable, abraded), and a median row of two small median posterior trunk and 15 small median tail thorns; colour when fresh, dorsal surface plain chalk white including orbits and ventral surface grayish-white; bases of equal-sized and short but high dorsal fins confluent; the postdorsal tail section is very short, with low epichordal caudal lobe which is confluent with second dorsal fin; whitish lateral tail folds along posterior 45% of tail; tooth rows on upper jaw 31; pectoral fin radials 55-56; clasper without external pseudosiphon, the inner dorsal lobe with components slit, terminal bridge, and two clefts and the inner ventral lobe with components shield, rhipidion, pent, sentinel, spike, and dike; terminal clasper skeleton with 4 dorsal terminal cartilages, a terminal bridge, a ventral terminal, and 2 accessory terminal cartilages; anterior cranial fontanelle with clear-cut contour all around and extending about one third into rostral shaft length; subquadratic scapulocoracoid, the rear corner sharply marked, large oval anterior fenestra without anterior bridge, one moderately large, oval postdorsal and postventral fenestra, respectively; pelvic girdle with massive ischiopubic bar with nearly straight anterior and deeply concave posterior contour; prepelvic processes are short, solid, conical, and somewhat inclined outwards, their length 1.9 times median thickness of ischiopubic bar (Ref. 96993).

Biology     Glossary (e.g. epibenthic)

Life cycle and mating behavior Maturity | Reproduction | Spawning | Eggs | Fecundity | Larvae

Main reference Upload your references | References | Coordinator : McEachran, John | Collaborators

Weigmann, S., M.F.W. Stehmann and R. Thiel, 2014. Rajella paucispinosa n. sp., a new deep-water skate (Elasmobranchii, Rajidae) from the western Indian Ocean off South Mozambique, and a revised generic diagnosis. Zootaxa 3847(3):359-387. (Ref. 96993)

IUCN Red List Status (Ref. 115185)

CITES (Ref. 94142)

Not Evaluated

Threat to humans

  Harmless




Human uses

FAO(Publication : search) | FisheriesWiki |

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Internet sources

BHL | Cloffa | Websites from users | Check FishWatcher | CISTI | Catalog of Fishes (gen., sp.) | DiscoverLife | ECOTOX | Faunafri | Fishes of Iran | Fishtrace | GenBank(genome, nucleotide) | GloBI | GOBASE | Google Books | Google Scholar | Google | IGFA World Record | MitoFish | Otolith Atlas of Taiwan Fishes | PubMed | Reef Life Survey | Scirus | SeaLifeBase | Tree of Life | Wikipedia(Go, Search) | World Records Freshwater Fishing | Zoobank | Zoological Record

Estimates of some properties based on models

Phylogenetic diversity index (Ref. 82805):  PD50 = 0.5000   [Uniqueness, from 0.5 = low to 2.0 = high].
Bayesian length-weight: a=0.01000 (0.00244 - 0.04107), b=3.04 (2.81 - 3.27), in cm Total Length, based on all LWR estimates for this body shape (Ref. 93245).
Trophic Level (Ref. 69278):  3.6   ±0.5 se; Based on size and trophs of closest relatives
Resilience (Ref. 69278):  Medium, minimum population doubling time 1.4 - 4.4 years (Preliminary K or Fecundity.).
Vulnerability (Ref. 59153):  Moderate vulnerability (35 of 100) .