|Scientific Name:||Aetomylaeus vespertilio|
|Species Authority:||(Bleeker, 1852)|
Aetomylaeus reticulates (Teng, 1962)
Myliobatis vespertilio Bleeker, 1852
|Taxonomic Notes:||Poorly represented in collections. The lack of specimens has caused some nomeclatural problems that have not been fully resolved. Older scientific names may apply to earlier growth stages of this species.|
|Red List Category & Criteria:||Endangered A2bd+3d+4d ver 3.1|
|Reviewer(s):||Kyne, P.M., Fowler, S.L. & Compagno, L.J.V. (Shark Red List Authority)|
Aetomylaeus vespertilio is a large (to 240 cm disc width), uncommon eagle ray which has not been sighted in any great numbers since its description more than 160 years ago. This species would be highly susceptible to a variety of fishing methods in regions where the level of exploitation of marine resources is very high and is increasing (e.g., India, Thailand, Taiwan and Indonesia). It is occasionally caught by the rhynchobatid gillnet fishery that operates in SE Asia. In Australian waters the fishing pressure would not be very high but it is rarely observed there. It is suspected to have limiting life history parameters similar to other myliobatid rays (including low fecundity). This species is assessed as Endangered under the criteria of A2bd+3d+4d due to the very high (and increasing) level of fishing pressure in inshore regions where it occurs, which is of great concern for this large, uncommon inshore species with limiting life history characteristics and high susceptibility to capture.
|Range Description:||Sporadic distribution in the Western and Eastern Indian, Western Central and Northwest Pacific.|
Native:Australia (Northern Territory, Queensland, Western Australia); China; India; Indonesia (Jawa, Kalimantan); Malaysia; Maldives; Mozambique; Taiwan, Province of China; Thailand
|FAO Marine Fishing Areas:||
Indian Ocean – eastern; Indian Ocean – western; Pacific – northwest; Pacific – western central
|Range Map:||Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.|
|Population:||Appears to be naturally uncommon, rarely observed.|
|Habitat and Ecology:||
Little known species. Occurs on the inner continental shelf to depths of 110 m over soft sandy substrate (Compagno and Last 1999). Reproductive biology, age and growth and dietary compositions are unknown for this species. Suspected low fecundity as with other myliobatids, for example Aetobatus narinari and Aetomylaeus nichofii, which bear litters of up to four offspring (Last and Stevens 1994, Compagno and Last 1999).
Life history parameters
Age at maturity (years): Unknown.
Size at maturity (total length cm): Unknown.
Longevity (years): Unknown.
Maximum size (total length/disc width): 240 cm DW (W. White, unpubl. data) 160 cm DW, 385 cm TL (Compagno and Last 1999).
Size at birth (cm): Unknown.
Average reproductive age (years): Unknown.
Gestation time (months): Unknown.
Reproductive periodicity: Unknown.
Average annual fecundity or litter size: Up to 4 (based on similar species).
Annual rate of population increase: Unknown.
Natural mortality: Unknown.
|Major Threat(s):||Highly susceptible to a variety of inshore demersal fisheries, including trawls, gillnets and trammel nets which operate intensively throughout its range (e.g., India, Thailand, Taiwan and Indonesia). All individuals caught are retained in most areas. Local eagle ray species are marketed in considerable numbers in Thailand and Malaysia (Compagno and Last 1999). A. maculates is occasionally landed in low numbers in the fish markets of Jakarta (Indonesia) by trawlers and is occasionally caught by the rhynchobatid gillnet fishery that operates in SE Asia (W. White, unpublished data). Even though once common, eagle rays are now rare in the Gulf of Thailand (Compagno and Last 1999). Intensive demersal fisheries occur in India, in the species' known distribution (Hanfee 1999). There is very high level of exploitation on the habitat that this species occurs in throughout its range.|
None in place. Market surveys are currently being conducted for elasmobranchs in Indonesia.
The development and implementation of management plans (national and/or regional e.g., under the FAO International Plan of Action for the Conservation and Management of Sharks: IPOA-Sharks) are required to facilitate the conservation and sustainable management of all chondrichthyan species in the region. See Anon. (2004) for an update of progress made by nations in the range of A. vespertilio.
|Citation:||White, W.T. 2006. Aetomylaeus vespertilio. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2014.3. <www.iucnredlist.org>. Downloaded on 30 January 2015.|