Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Chondrichthyes Rajiformes Arhynchobatidae

Scientific Name: Insentiraja laxipella
Species Authority: (Yearsley & Last, 1992)
Common Name(s):
English Eastern Looseskin Skate
Notoraja laxipella (Yearsley & Last 1992)
Pavoraja laxipella Yearsley & Last, 1992
Taxonomic Notes: Insentiraja laxipella could be generically distinct. Unique among Australian skates, in lacking dorsal fins.

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Data Deficient ver 3.1
Year Published: 2009
Date Assessed: 2008-12-01
Assessor(s): Huveneers, C. & Last, P.R.
Reviewer(s): Notarbartolo di Sciara, G., Stevens, J.D. & Valenti, S.V. (Shark Red List Authority)
The Eastern Looseskin Skate (Insentiraja laxipella) is a small, highly distinctive, deepwater skate, Insentiraja laxipella occurs at depths of 800-880 m. This species is restricted to the continental slope off Cairns (Queensland). Its biology is virtually unknown as it is known from the type specimens only. Fisheries are not thought to operate within this species' range at present but its restricted depth and geographic range could make it vulnerable to depletion in the future. This species is still very poorly known and cannot be assessed beyond Data Deficient, without further information on its range, population and potential threats.

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: Western central Pacific: an Australian endemic, restricted to the continental slope off Cairns (Queensland) in the Coral Sea (Last and Stevens 1994). Likely to only exist on seamounts offshore from North East Queensland.
Countries occurrence:
Australia (Queensland)
FAO Marine Fishing Areas:
Pacific – western central
Lower depth limit (metres): 880
Upper depth limit (metres): 800
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: Population structure of the Eastern Looseskin Skate is unknown. Its range is narrow and the area of its occurrence is rarely surveyed.
Current Population Trend: Unknown
Additional data:
Population severely fragmented: No

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: A small, highly distinctive, deepwater skate, this species occurs on the mid continental slope at depths of 800-880 m and attain at least 57 cm TL (Last and Compagno 1999). Its biology is virtually unknown as it is known from type specimens only.

A bottom-dwelling species that probably feeds on invertebrates (including small to large crustaceans, cephalopods) and demersal bony fish. Oviparous and deposits eggs in large, quadrangular egg cases (Last and Compagno 1999).
Systems: Marine

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): The Eastern Looseskin Skate is unlikely to be of commercial value but is restricted to a narrow depth and geographical range. There is no current fishing pressure in its area of occurrence. Trawl fisheries could dramatically affect the population if they began to take it as bycatch, due its narrow geographic and depth range.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: Careful monitoring of fishing effort in the area of occurrence is needed to ensure that the current population is not detrimentally affected.

Citation: Huveneers, C. & Last, P.R. 2009. Insentiraja laxipella. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2009: e.T161390A5413063. . Downloaded on 13 October 2015.
Disclaimer: To make use of this information, please check the <Terms of Use>.
Feedback: If you see any errors or have any questions or suggestions on what is shown on this page, please provide us with feedback so that we can correct or extend the information provided