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Rhinobatos punctifer Compagno & Randall, 1987

Spotted guitarfish
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Rhinobatos punctifer   AquaMaps   Data sources: GBIF OBIS
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Image of Rhinobatos punctifer (Spotted guitarfish)
Rhinobatos punctifer
Picture by Randall, J.E.

Classification / Names Common names | Synonyms | Catalog of Fishes(genus, species) | ITIS | CoL | WoRMS | Cloffa

Elasmobranchii (sharks and rays) > Rhinopristiformes (Shovelnose rays) > Rhinobatidae (Guitarfishes)
Etymology: Rhinobatos: Greek, rhinos = nose + Greek, batis, -idos = a ray (Raja sp.) (Ref. 45335).
More on authors: Compagno & Randall.

Environment: milieu / climate zone / depth range / distribution range Ecology

Marine; benthopelagic; depth range 70 - 150 m (Ref. 100719). Tropical; 29°N - 12°N, 32°E - 66°E (Ref. 114953)

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

Western Indian Ocean: Gulf of Aqaba, Gulf of Suez, Red Sea, Muscat (Oman) to Pakistan.

Size / Weight / Age

Maturity: Lm ?  range ? - ? cm
Max length : 88.9 cm TL male/unsexed; (Ref. 123963)

Short description Identification keys | Morphology | Morphometrics

This species is distinguished by the following set of characters: disc wedge-shaped, its width 29-34% TL, length 1.2-1.3 times width; snout is relatively short, its length 2.2-2.6 times interspiracular distance, 3.6-3.9 times interorbital width in large males (2.9-3.4 in females); orbit diameter 1.2-1.7 times the spiracle length; nostrils are weakly oblique, their length 1.3-1.9 times internarial distance; mouth is narrow, its width 5.4-5.6% TL in large males (5.8-6.2% in females); posterior nasal flaps are broad; two spiracular folds, with outermost fold slightly taller than inner fold; ridges of rostral cartilage almost parallel, converging slightly anteriorly but not constricted medially; anterior cartilage subtriangular to sickle-shaped, usually blunt posteriorly; distance between fifth gill slits 2.8-3.1 times in ventral head length in large males (2.5-2.6 in females); prebranchial sensory pore patch distinct, extending to outer margin of first gill slit; postscapular sensory canal usually distinct, notched, with exposed lateral pores; inconspicuous thorn patches on the supraorbit and scapular region, with a single row along dorsal midline rudimentary; denticles are confined to anterior portion of dorsal fins, posterior two-thirds naked; dorsal fins are relatively tall, height of first 7.6-9.5% TL; pelvic-fin inner margin shorter than its base length; interdorsal distance 2.1-2.7 times first dorsal-fin base; dorsal caudal margin 2.1-2.2 times the preventral margin; upper jaw with ~76 tooth rows; snout angle 60-75°; pectoral radials 69-75; post-synarcual centra 175-184; nasal lamellae ~59, Colouration: dorsal highly variable, plain brownish to greenish brown, faintly or strongly marked with small white spots, ocellated, or with a combination of reticulations and ocelli; the posterior half of dorsal and caudal fins usually dusky or blackish; snout with a pale or dusky tip, no long teardrop-shaped marking (Ref. 123963).

Biology     Glossary (e.g. epibenthic)

Demersal inshore on continental shelf to 70 m depth. Feeds on small crustaceans and fishes. Matures at ca. 62 cm TL; born at ca. 25 cm TL (Ref. 114953). Ovoviviparous (Ref. 50449). Produces litters of up to 7 pups (Ref. 114953).

Life cycle and mating behavior Maturities | Reproduction | Spawnings | Egg(s) | Fecundities | Larvae

Exhibit ovoviparity (aplacental viviparity), with embryos feeding initially on yolk, then receiving additional nourishment from the mother by indirect absorption of uterine fluid enriched with mucus, fat or protein through specialised structures (Ref. 50449).

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

Randall, J.E. and L.J.V. Compagno, 1995. A review of the guitarfishes of the genus Rhinobatos (Rajiformes: Rhinobatidae) from Oman, with description of a new species. Raffles Bull. Zool. 43(2):289-298. (Ref. 11293)

IUCN Red List Status (Ref. 130435)

  Near Threatened (NT) (A2d+3d); Date assessed: 08 February 2017


CMS (Ref. 116361)

Not Evaluated

Threat to humans


Human uses

FAO - Publication: search | FishSource |

More information

Trophic ecology
Food items
Diet compositions
Food consumptions
Food rations
Population dynamics
Max. ages / sizes
Length-weight rel.
Length-length rel.
Mass conversions
Life cycle
Spawning aggregations
Egg developments
Larval dynamics
FAO areas
BRUVS - Videos
Gill areas
Body compositions
Oxygen consumptions
Swimming type
Swimming speeds
Visual pigment(s)
Fish sounds
Diseases / Parasites
Toxicities (LC50s)
Human related
Aquaculture systems
Aquaculture profiles
Ciguatera cases
Stamps, coins, misc.


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Internet sources

AFORO (otoliths) | Aquatic Commons | BHL | Cloffa | BOLDSystems | Websites from users | Check FishWatcher | CISTI | Catalog of Fishes: genus, species | DiscoverLife | ECOTOX | FAO - Publication: search | Faunafri | Fishipedia | Fishtrace | GenBank: genome, nucleotide | GloBI | Google Books | Google Scholar | Google | IGFA World Record | MitoFish | Otolith Atlas of Taiwan Fishes | PubMed | Reef Life Survey | Socotra Atlas | Tree of Life | Wikipedia: Go, Search | World Records Freshwater Fishing | Zoobank | Zoological Record

Estimates based on models

Preferred temperature (Ref. 123201): 22.9 - 28.5, mean 26.4 °C (based on 364 cells).
Phylogenetic diversity index (Ref. 82804):  PD50 = 0.5000   [Uniqueness, from 0.5 = low to 2.0 = high].
Bayesian length-weight: a=0.00195 (0.00126 - 0.00301), b=3.13 (3.00 - 3.26), in cm total length, based on LWR estimates for this species & (Sub)family-body (Ref. 93245).
Trophic level (Ref. 69278):  3.7   ±0.4 se; based on size and trophs of closest relatives
Resilience (Ref. 120179):  Low, minimum population doubling time 4.5 - 14 years (Fec assumed to be <100).
Fishing Vulnerability (Ref. 59153):  High vulnerability (56 of 100).