Rhinobatos sainsburyi 

Scope: Global
Language: English

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Chondrichthyes Rhinopristiformes Rhinobatidae

Scientific Name: Rhinobatos sainsburyi Last, 2004
Common Name(s):
English Goldeneye Shovelnose Ray
Taxonomic Source(s): Eschmeyer, W.N., Fricke, R. and Van der Laan, R. (eds). 2016. Catalog of Fishes: genera, species, references. Updated 29 September 2016. Available at: (Accessed: 29 September 2016).
Taxonomic Notes: There are two sympatric forms of this species which differ in colour pattern; the relationship between these forms requires study (Last and Stevens 2009).

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2015
Date Assessed: 2015-05-12
Assessor(s): McAuley, R.B. & Kyne, P.M.
Reviewer(s): Walls, R.H.L. & Bigman, J.S.
Facilitator/Compiler(s): Kyne, P.M. & Walls, R.H.L.
The Goldeneye Shovelnose Ray (Rhinobatos sainsburyi) is a little known but common species endemic to northwest Australia. It occurs on the continental shelf at depths of 70-200 m, which is within the area of local fish and prawn trawl fisheries. It is a known discarded bycatch of the Pilbara Fish Trawl Fishery and probably the Northern Prawn Fishery. It is of negligible commercial value due to its small size (to 60 cm total length), low recovery of saleable flesh, and lack of markets. Parts of its range are permanently closed to trawling, and it is assessed as Least Concern.
Previously published Red List assessments:

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:The Goldeneye Shovelnose Ray is endemic to northwest Australia in the Eastern Indian Ocean where it occurs from the Monte Bello Islands in Western Australia to Melville Island in the Northern Territory (Last 2004, Last and Stevens 2009). Its distribution is possibly wider than reported due to the limited number of surveys of the elasmobranch fauna of the area.
Countries occurrence:
Australia (Northern Territory, Western Australia)
FAO Marine Fishing Areas:
Indian Ocean – eastern
Additional data:
Lower depth limit (metres):200
Upper depth limit (metres):70
Range Map:Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population:A common species (Last and Stevens 2009), but nothing is known of population size or structure.
Current Population Trend:Unknown
Additional data:

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology:The Goldeneye Shovelnose Ray occurs on the continental shelf at depths of 70-200 m (Last and Stevens 2009). Very little is known about its life history characteristics. It reaches a maximum size of at least 60 cm total length (TL) with males mature at about 40-45 cm TL (Last and Stevens 2009). Presumably aplacental viviparous like other shovelnose rays.

Use and Trade [top]

Use and Trade: Not known to be utilized.

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): The Goldeneye Shovelnose Ray is a known discarded bycatch in the Pilbara Fish Trawl Fishery (Stephenson and Chidlow 2003). It is also a likely bycatch of the Commonwealth Northern Prawn Fishery where it operates in Joseph Bonaparte Gulf and the western Northern Territory.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: Considerable areas of Western Australia's North Coast Bioregion are permanently closed to all trawling through spatial management arrangements, and there have been reductions in effort quota in the Pilbara Fish Trawl Fishery since 2009 (Fletcher and Santoro 2014). Turtle Exclusion Devices are unlikely to prevent capture in trawl nets due to the small size of the species. All sharks and rays are commercially protected under Western Australian law. This regulation essentially restricts the retention of all shark and ray products by commercial fishing vessels other than those operating in the State's managed shark fishery.

Citation: McAuley, R.B. & Kyne, P.M. 2015. Rhinobatos sainsburyi. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2015: e.T42721A68641936. . Downloaded on 21 April 2018.
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