Urogymnus asperrimus 


Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Chondrichthyes Rajiformes Dasyatidae

Scientific Name: Urogymnus asperrimus
Species Authority: (Bloch & Schneider,1801)
Common Name(s):
English Porcupine Ray
Raja asperrima Bloch & Schneider, 1801

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Vulnerable A2bd ver 3.1
Year Published: 2005
Date Assessed: 2005-10-01
Assessor(s): Compagno, L.J.V.
Reviewer(s): Musick, J.A. & Fowler, S.L. (Shark Red List Authority)
This assessment is based on the information published in the 2005 shark status survey (Fowler et al. 2005).

Although widespread in the Indian Ocean and Indo-West Pacific, the Porcupine Ray (Urogymnus asperrimus) does not seem to be regularly recorded, and has certainly significantly decreased in abundance in parts of the centre of its range for which comparative data are available.
Previously published Red List assessments:
2000 Vulnerable (VU)

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: Wide ranging, but relatively uncommon, in the Indo-West Pacific; also possibly tropical West Africa (Senegal, Guinea, Ivory Coast) and invasive in the eastern Mediterranean (via Suez Canal).

Localities include South Africa, Madagascar, Kenya, Seychelles, Red Sea (Koseir), Saudi Arabia, Oman (Muscat), Gulf of Oman, Arabian Sea and Persian Gulf, Pakistan, India (Bombay, Madras, Malpe, South Canara on Malabar Coast), Sri Lanka, Myanmar, Malaysia (Malay Peninsula, Penang), Singapore, Thailand, Indonesia (Jakarta, Java, Kalimantan), possibly the Philippines, Vietnam (Cholon), Australia (Queensland, Western Australia, Northern Territory), New Guinea and Melanesia (Fowler 1941, Herre 1953, Capape and Desoutter 1990, Last and Stevens 1994, Last and Compagno 1999).
Countries occurrence:
Australia (Northern Territory, Queensland, Western Australia); Egypt; Eritrea; Fiji; India; Indonesia; Iran, Islamic Republic of; Iraq; Kenya; Madagascar; Malaysia; Myanmar; New Caledonia; Norfolk Island; Oman; Pakistan; Saudi Arabia; Seychelles; Singapore; Solomon Islands; South Africa; Sri Lanka; Sudan; Thailand; United Arab Emirates; Vanuatu; Viet Nam; Yemen
FAO Marine Fishing Areas:
Indian Ocean – western; Indian Ocean – eastern; Pacific – western central
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Current Population Trend: Unknown
Additional data:
Population severely fragmented: No

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: There is virtually no information available on life history parameters for this species. Age at maturity, longevity, average reproductive age, generation time and average annual fecundity are all unknown. Although very wide ranging, this ray appears to be uncommon compared to various species of Himantura, Dasyatis, Pastinachus and Taeniura which are sympatric with it.
Systems: Marine

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): The species is presumably largely taken as bycatch in unregulated fisheries in open access and nearshore waters. It appears to have disappeared or become extremely rare (compared to certain other batoids) in the batoid catches landed in Bangkok from the Gulf of Thailand over the last three decades (Compagno and Cook unpubl.). This suggests probable local over-exploitation here and possibly also in the Bay of Bengal. Similar trends are likely to be occurring or will occur in other areas where batoids are taken in multi-species fisheries. Human modification and degradation of the ray's habitat is also possibly occurring in some of the more highly populated and polluted coastal areas as a result of human influences. Overfishing in these areas could also affect populations of prey species.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: No conservation or management initiatives have been identified.

Citation: Compagno, L.J.V. 2005. Urogymnus asperrimus. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2005: e.T39413A10230300. . Downloaded on 29 June 2016.
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