Maculabatis pastinacoides 

Scope: Global
Language: English

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Chondrichthyes Myliobatiformes Dasyatidae

Scientific Name: Maculabatis pastinacoides (Bleeker, 1852)
Common Name(s):
English Round Whipray
Himantura pareh (Bleeker, 1852)
Himantura pastinacoides (Bleeker, 1852)
Trygon pastinacoides Bleeker, 1852
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: Last et al. (2016) described the genus Maculabatis, consisting of nine medium to large, marine whiprays previously placed in Himantura (including pastinacoides).

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Vulnerable A2bcd+3bcd+4bcd ver 3.1
Year Published: 2016
Date Assessed: 2004-09-12
Needs updating
Assessor(s): Manjaji Matsumoto, B.M., Last, P.R., Fahmi & White, W.T.
Reviewer(s): Valenti, S.V. & Notarbartolo di Sciara, G.
This is an amended version of the 2004 assessment to accommodate the change in genus name from Himatura to Maculabatis.

This inshore stingray occurs throughout areas of Malaysia (Sabah and Sarawak) and the Indonesia archipelago (including Borneo, Java and Sumatra). Reports from elsewhere require verification. It is restricted to shallow inshore waters (generally less than 30 m deep) and frequently occurs in ebayments, river mouths and mangroves. It forms a significant component of the elasmobranch bycatch from fish and prawn trawlers, as well as tangle/gillnet, trawlnet, and dropline fisheries operating throughout Southeast Asia and is retained for human consumption. Although no species-specific data are available, catches of stingrays are generally reported to have declined in inshore waters, with fishers having to travel further to sustain catch levels. Other inshore species (that occur in the same bathymetric range) in Indonesia are now rarely caught and appear to have declined significantly as a result of high levels of exploitation. Significant loss of mangrove habitat (almost 30% loss of combined mangrove area in Malaysia and Indonesia since 1980) through conversion of land to shrimp farms, logging and coastal development and degradation of coastal habitat is also thought to have significantly impacted this species. It is assessed as Vulnerable on the basis of inferred past and projected future declines as a result of continuing high levels of exploitation and reductions in quality and extent of habitat.
Previously published Red List assessments:

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:Indo-West Pacific: Widely distributed in the Indo-Malay Archipelago, including Borneo, Java and Sumatra (White et al. 2006). Found throughout the inshore coastal waters off Sabah and Sarawak, Malaysia, and in waters around the Indonesian archipelago (Pengaron, Batavia) (Bleeker 1852, 1853). Reports elsewhere in the region, e.g., Sri Lankan waters (Morón et al. 1999) require verification (Manjaji 2004). Not in Bali or Lombok (Fahmi pers. obs.).

FAO fishing area: 57, 71.
Countries occurrence:
Indonesia (Jawa, Kalimantan, Sumatera); Malaysia (Sabah, Sarawak)
FAO Marine Fishing Areas:
Indian Ocean – eastern; Pacific – western central
Additional data:
Range Map:Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population:Little information is available for this species, but it is a regionally common bycatch of fisheries off southern Borneo (White et al. 2006).
Current Population Trend:Decreasing
Additional data:
Population severely fragmented:No

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology:This demersal species is found inshore on continental shelves, frequently in coastal embayments near large river mouths and in mangrove habitat (White et al. 2006, B.M. Manjaji pers. obs. 2007). It is limited to the shallows, generally found no deeper than 30 m (Famhi pers. obs. 2007). The species reaches a maximum size of about 100 cm disc width (DW), and males probably mature at 43-46 cm DW (Manjaji 2004).

Reproduction is presumably viviparous, with histotrophy, like others of this genus, but biology little-known (White et al. 2006). Fecundity is thought to be one pup per litter (Manjaji 2004). End term neonates of 15-16 cm DW have been observed from large females in fish markets (Manjaji 2004).

Use and Trade [top]

Use and Trade: Flesh is used fresh or salted and dried for human consumption. In some areas, vertebrae is dried and exported; skins are dried and used for manufacturing items such as wallets, belts, shoes, handbags etc. most of which are exported e.g. Thailand.

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): This species' inshore habitat is under a very high level of unregulated exploitation throughout its range. It forms a significant component of the elasmobranch bycatch from fish and prawn trawlers, as well as tangle/gillnet, trawlnet, and dropline fisheries operating in Southeast Asia (M. Manjaji and Fahmi pers. obs. 2007). It is also a regionally common bycatch of bottom trawl and beach seine fisheries off southern Borneo (White et al. 2006). All size classes are captured by trawl fisheries and the species is retained and utilised for human consumption and its skin for leather. Even neonates from large specimens have been observed being chopped up on fish markets (B.M. Manjaji pers. obs.). Although no species-specific data are available, catches of stingrays are generally reported to have declined in inshore waters, with fishers having to travel further to sustain catch levels.

Habitat destruction and pollution (chemical) through aquaculture (specifically conversion of mangrove habitat into shrimp farms), mining and coastal development is a major threat throughout its range in Southeast Asia. This species is known to be associated with mangrove habitat, extensive areas of which have been lost in Indonesia and Malaysia through conversion of land for shrimp farms (Malaysia, East Java, Sulawesi and Sumatra), excessive logging, urban development (Malaysia) and, to a lesser extent, conversion of land to agriculture or salt pans (Java and Sulawesi) (FAO 2007). Indonesia lost about 1,300,000 hectares of mangroves from 1980-2005 (>30% of mangrove area in 1980) and Malaysia lost about 110,000 hectares during the same period (>16% of mangrove area in 1980) (FAO 2007). In addition to loss of mangrove forests, extensive habitat degradation through destructive fishing practises and pollution has also impacted this species' shallow water habitat.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: No conservation and management measures are in place. Further research is required on the species' life-history, full range and capture in fisheries. Data need to be collected to allow accurate monitoring of population trends.

In Malaysia, the Shark Specialist Group together with various government departments in Sabah and Sarawak States have initiated elasmobranch biodiversity studies since 1996 (Fowler et al. 2002). While the monitoring surveys should continue to ascertain the status and possible threats to this species here, as well as in other portions of its range (New Guinea and Indonesia), further research should be directed at population, habitat and ecology and life history parameters. The fishery is largely unregulated (licenses being issued, but catches/ landings are not properly monitored), and presently there is no specific conservation actions in place to help address this problem.

Citation: Manjaji Matsumoto, B.M., Last, P.R., Fahmi & White, W.T. 2016. Maculabatis pastinacoides. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2016: e.T161540A104190354. . Downloaded on 20 June 2018.
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