Notoraja ochroderma 


Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Chondrichthyes Rajiformes Arhynchobatidae

Scientific Name: Notoraja ochroderma
Species Authority: McEachran & Last, 1994
Common Name(s):
English Pale Skate
Taxonomic Notes: Referred to as Notoraja sp. B in Last and Stevens (1994).

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Data Deficient ver 3.1
Year Published: 2015
Date Assessed: 2015-05-04
Assessor(s): Huveneers, C. & Last, P.R.
Reviewer(s): Walls, R.H.L. & Kyne, P.M.
Contributor(s): Kyne, P.M.
Facilitator/Compiler(s): Kyne, P.M. & Walls, R.H.L.
The Pale Skate (Notoraja ochroderma) is a small (to 36 cm total length) deepwater skate, known to occur at depths of 400–450 m. It is known from only a small area of the continental slope off northeast Queensland, Australia. Its biology is virtually unknown as it is known from the type specimens only (five individuals). The species' range is within the management area of the Coral Sea Fishery, however there has been no trawling in that fishery since 2006-07. Given the currently-known restricted distribution of the species, monitoring of any trawl activity in the future is warranted. The species may benefit from its occurrence in the Coral Sea Commonwealth Marine Reserve. This species is still very poorly known and cannot be assessed beyond Data Deficient without further study.
Previously published Red List assessments:
2009 Data Deficient (DD)

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: The Pale Skate is an Australian endemic known only from a very small area of the continental slope off Cairns, Queensland (McEachran and Last 1994, Last and Stevens 2009) and is likely to only exist on seamounts offshore from northeast Queensland.
Countries occurrence:
Australia (Queensland)
FAO Marine Fishing Areas:
Pacific – western central
Lower depth limit (metres): 450
Upper depth limit (metres): 400
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: Nothing is known of the population size or trend as the species is known from only five specimens (McEachran and Last 1994). The species' range is narrow and is rarely surveyed.
Current Population Trend: Unknown
Additional data:
Population severely fragmented: No

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: The Pale Skate is a small, deepwater skate that can be found on the mid-continental slope at depths of 400–450 m (McEachran and Last 1994). This species attains at least 37 cm total length (TL) and males are mature at about 35 cm TL (Last and Stevens 2009). Its biology is virtually unknown, as it is known from type specimens only. A benthic species with oviparous reproduction (Last and Compagno 1999).
Systems: Marine

Use and Trade [top]

Use and Trade: This species is not known to be utilized or traded.

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): The range of this skate overlaps with the Commonwealth-managed Coral Sea Fishery. This is a small-scale fishery and there has been no trawling in this fishery since 2006-07 (Noriega et al. 2014).

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: There are no species-specific conservation measures in place. The range of the species occurs in the Coral Sea Commonwealth Marine Reserve, a multi-zone marine park with fishing allowed in certain areas. Careful monitoring of fishing effort throughout the species' distribution is needed to ensure that the current population is not detrimentally affected.

Citation: Huveneers, C. & Last, P.R. 2015. Notoraja ochroderma. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2015: e.T161559A68637419. . Downloaded on 29 November 2015.
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