PORT PHILLIP BAY


Southern Eagle Ray 

Myliobatis australis Macleay, 1881

View scientific description and taxonomy

Scientific Details

Additional information in:
Gomon. M.F., Bray, D.J. & Kuiter, R.H. (eds) (2008) Fishes of Australia's Southern Coast. Sydney : Reed New Holland 928 pp.

Order level detail.
Highly specialised ray-like fishes with the body and pectoral fins united into a flattened disc with a long slender tail, usually armed with venomous spines used for defence.

Family level detail.
Medium to large rays with a wide rhomboidal disc with pointed ?wings? with the head protruding out in front, a rounded snout, eyes and spiracles on the side of the head, a broad mouth on the underside with rows of plate-like crushing teeth. Eagle rays have a long filamentous tail, often with a serrated spine near the base.

Taxonomy

Phylum:
Chordata
Subphylum:
Craniata
Superclass:
Gnathostomata
Class:
Chondrichthyes
Subclass:
Elasmobranchii
Superorder:
Batoidea
Order:
Myliobatiformes
Family:
Myliobatidae
Genus:
Myliobatis
Species:
australis

General Description

Head thick, with a broad margin and a fleshy lobe around the snout continuous with the wings; disc short, broad, with smooth skin and a deep notch beside the eye; dorsal-fin origin near rear tips of pelvic fins; tail long, whip-like with a venomous spine just behind the small dorsal fin. Upperside greenish to yellowish-brown with pale bluish blotches or bands, underside pale. To 1.6 m.

Biology

These rays feed on small fishes and invertebrates such as crabs, molluscs and polychaete worms. Females give birth to live young. They are taken as bycatch in trawl fisheries.

Habitat

Common inshore near beaches, sandy shoals and sand flats, to depth of 130 m.

Soft substrates

Distribution guide

Southern Australia.

Species Group

Sharks and rays Stingrays, stingarees and allies

Depth

Shallow (1-30 m)
Deep ( > 30 m)

Water Column

On or near sea floor

Max Size

1.6 m

Diet

Carnivore

Harmful

Not usually considered dangerous to humans, but venomous spine on tail can cause injury.

Commercial Species

No

Global Dispersal

Native to Australia

Conservation Status

  • DSE Advisory List : Not listed
  • EPBC Act 1999 : Not listed
  • IUCN Red List : Least Concern

Author

article author Bray, D.J.

Di Bray is a Senior Collection Manager of ichthyology at Museum Victoria.

Author

article author Gomon, M.F.

Dr. Martin Gomon is a Senior Curator of ichthyology at Museum Victoria.

citation

Cite this page as:
Bray, D.J. & Gomon, M.F., 2011, Southern Eagle Ray, Myliobatis australis, in Taxonomic Toolkit for marine life of Port Phillip Bay, Museum Victoria, accessed 23 Jul 2017, http://portphillipmarinelife.net.au:8098/species/6571

Text: creative commons cc by licence