Shorefishes of the Greater Caribbean online information system

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Species: Fenestraja sinusmexicanus, Gulf Skate, Gulf Window Skate

All Families:   All Genera:   All Species:

brown above, yellow below
central disc thorns: 3-4 rows rear disc to D
triangle of thorns: nape & shoulders
no pits at corners nasal curtain
pelvic: front lobe 80-100% rear lobe

Fenestraja sinusmexicanus (Bigelow & Schroeder, 1950)

Gulf Skate, Gulf Window Skate

Heart-shaped disc with front margins undulating; tip of snout pointed, flexible, not elongate; front pectoral fin rays extend nearly to tip of snout; eyes on top of head, large (~space between them), with spiracles immediately behind; nostrils a little in front of mouth, with front lobes from nostrils forming a curtain between them and mouth; no nasal pits before and above nasal curtain; pelvic fin with 2 distinct lobes joined by membrane, front lobe equal to or only slightly shorter than rear lobe; tail 65-67% of TL, base narrow (<eye); 2 small dorsal fins near rear of tail, with tail fin as a fold behind the second dorsal, distance between them 1/3 of length of base of the first dorsal;upper surface more or less uniformly covered with denticles; thorns around eyes, in a triangular patch on nape & shoulders, 3 rows of thorns along center of rear half of disc and 3-4 rows along top of tail to first dorsal fin; no denticles on underside of tail.

Upper surface purplish brown, sometimes with dark blotches; lower surface yellowish white.

Reaches 36 cm.

Habitat: soft bottoms.

Depth: 56-1784 m.

The Gulf of Mexico to the S Caribbean.

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  • Marine
  • Marine Only
  • In & Offshore
  • Inshore
  • Offshore
Water Column Position
  • Bottom
  • Bottom only
  • Sand & gravel
  • Soft bottom (mud/sand/gravel/beach/estuary/mangrove/seagrass)
  • Soft bottom only
  • Mud
FishBase Habitat
  • Demersal
Feeding Group
  • Carnivore
  • Data
  • Data
  • Bony fishes
  • Mobile benthic crustacea (shrimps/crabs)
  • Mobile benthic worms
Egg Type
  • Benthic
  • Data
  • No pelagic larva
  • No pelagic phase
Global Endemism
  • All species
  • Greater Caribbean endemic
  • West Atlantic Endemic
Regional Endemism
  • Continent
  • Continent + Island (s)
  • Continental primarily
  • GC endemic
  • Island (s)
  • All species
  • Resident
Climate Zone
  • Equatorial (0-10N, Costa Rica / Venezuela)
  • Subtropical (23-35N, Florida / Carolinas / Bermuda)
  • Tropical (10-23N, Nicaragua / Cuba)
IUCN Red List
  • Data deficient
  • Listed
  • Not listed
Length Max
  • 36
Depth Range Min
  • 56
Depth Range Max
  • 1784