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Leucoraja garmani

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
ANIMALIA CHORDATA CHONDRICHTHYES RAJIFORMES RAJIDAE

Scientific Name: Leucoraja garmani
Species Authority: (Whitley, 1939)
Common Name(s):
English Rosette Skate
Synonym(s):
Raja garmani Whitley, 1939
Taxonomic Notes: The genus has changed from Raja to Leucoraja (McEachran and Dunn 1998). This assessment assumes a single species. However, populations north of Cape Hatteras have been considered as the subspecies L. garmani virginica while those between the Cape and the Dry Tortugas have been considered as L. g. garmani, but they may represent two distinct species (McEachran 1977, McEachran 2002).

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2009
Date Assessed: 2008-12-01
Assessor(s): Gedamke, T.
Reviewer(s): Dulvy, N.K., Sulikowski, J. & Valenti, S.V. (Shark Red List Authority)
Justification:
This US endemic species is found from Nantucket Shoals to the Dry Tortugas, Florida with the separation of two sub-species at Cape Hatteras, North Carolina. There is no directed fishery for the rosette skate and it is caught only as incidental bycatch. The species is found at depths of 33-530 m and is most common between 74-274 m. Survey indices from north of Cape Hatteras have been increasing gradually since 1967. Although catch indices were not available from the southern range of the species there is no reason to believe there is any current threat to the Rosette Skate throughout its range and it is assessed as Least Concern.

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: The Rosette Skate occurs from Nantucket Shoals to the Dry Tortugas, Florida (Bigelow and Schroeder 1953a,b; Bullis and Thompson 1965, McEachran and Musick 1975, McEachran 1977, Stehmann and McEachran 1978). In the Straits of Florida it is found on Pourtates Terrace (Staiger 1970).
Countries:
Native:
United States (Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia)
FAO Marine Fishing Areas:
Native:
Atlantic – northwest; Atlantic – western central
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: Historically, Schroeder (1955) reported the Rosette Skate to be fairly abundant from the eastern slope of Georges Bank to Cape Charles, Virginia while Struhsaker (1969) found it to be very abundant along the outer continental shelf from Cape Hatteras to Florida. As mentioned in the taxonomic notes that these reports may actually come from two distinct species. Currently there is very little information on the populations south of Cape Hatteras. However, NEFSC spring and fall groundfish surveys from Cape Hatteras to the northern edge of the rosette skates range have shown an increasing trend in biomass indices since 1967 (Packer et al. 2003, NEFMC 2006).
Population Trend: Unknown

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: The Rosette Skate is found on soft substrates, including sand to mud bottoms at depths of 33-530 m and is most common between 74 and 274 m (Bigelow and Schroeder 1953b, Bullis and Thompson 1965, Schroeder 1955, Struhsaker 1969, McEachran and Musick 1975). Bigelow and Schroeder (1953b) reported its temperature range as 5.3-15°C. Although some suggestions have been made that the species moves inshore during the summer there is not enough data to evaluate seasonal differences in distribution related to depth and temperature. Size at maturity is reported for males and females combined, at 33.5-43.9 cm TL north of Cape Hatteras (McEachran 1977) and 25.0-31.4cm TL south of Cape Hatteras (McEachran 1977). Maximum observed size is 57 cm TL (Packer et al. 2003).

McEachran (1977) reported that maximum size and size at maturity increase with latitude. The major food sources are similar to that of the other western Atlantic skate species being comprised of shrimp (C. septemspinosa), Cancer and galatheoid crabs, amphipods, polychaetes, copepods, cumaceans, squids, octopods, and small fish (Stehmann and McEachran 1978, Bowman et al. 2000).
Systems: Marine

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): Skates are commonly taken as bycatch in groundfish trawling, scallop dredging and discarded recreational and foreign landings are currently insignificant, at <1% of the total fishery landings. Landings in the USA are not reported by species, with over 99% of the landings reported as "unclassified skates". Skates are retained for the export of skate wings and for utilization as lobster bait. However, wings are taken from Winter Skate and Thorny Skate, whereas bait landings are believed to be primarily from Little Skates. There is no evidence of any directed fishery for the Rosette Skate with incidental bycatch as the primary threat to the species.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: There are currently no regulations or conservation actions in place for the Rosette Skate. Rosette Skate is not considered to be overfished (NFSC 2000a, b).

Citation: Gedamke, T. 2009. Leucoraja garmani. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2014.3. <www.iucnredlist.org>. Downloaded on 19 December 2014.
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