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the web of life in southern Africa

Hexatrygon bickelli (Sixgill stingray)

Heemstra & Smith, 1980

 Life > Eukaryotes > Opisthokonta > Metazoa (animals) > Bilateria > Deuterostomia > Chordata > Craniata > Vertebrata (vertebrates)  > Gnathostomata (jawed vertebrates) > Chondrichthyes > Elasmobranchii > Batoidei >  Myliobatoidei > Hexatrygonidae

Hexatrygon bickelli (Sixgill stingray) [Illustration by Ann Hecht ]

Identification

A bizarre, flabby, deepwater stingray with a long, thick, fleshy snout and six pairs of gill slits. Colour dark violet blue or brownish above, white below.

Size

To over 1.1 m TL and 50 cm DW.

Range

East coast, known from two beached specimens in Algoa Bay and Port Alfred; West-Central Pacific.

 

 

Habitat

Probably the upper slope below 200 m in the area, elsewhere this species or close relatives caught between 300 to 1000 m. Biology Virtually unknown. A live beached specimen at Port Alfred gave birth to three young. Rare, more specimens wanted.

Human Impact

None.

Text by Leonard J.V. Compagno, David A. Ebert and Malcolm J. Smale