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Species: Fenestraja cubensis, Cuban Pygmy Skate, Cuban Window Skate

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top disc dark blotches, tail dark crossbars
central disc thorns: small, 1 row 72 to D
shoulder: 0/2 thorns
no pits at corners nasal curtain
pelvics: front lobe 70% rear lobe

Fenestraja cubensis (Bigelow & Schroeder, 1950)

Cuban Pygmy Skate, Cuban Window Skate

Heart-shaped disc with front margins distinctly undulating; disc width 1.2X length; snout short (before eyes 10% TL); 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 70% of length of rear lobe; tail 62% of TL, base narrow (<eye), lateral folds on rear 2/3; 2 small dorsal fins near rear of tail, with tail fin as a fold behind the second dorsal, distance between them ~1/4X length of base of the first dorsal; upper surface with scattered small denticles, pelvics smooth; thorns relatively small, 10-11 around inner edges of eyes; 0-2 thorns on each shoulder, a central row of 72 from nape to 1st dorsal fin,1 row on each side of tail; tail with scattered denticles, including between dorsals and front of dorsal fins; no denticles on underside of disc and tail.

Upper surface pale brownish with a few small roundish darker spots and larger irregular blotches, largest one in center of each pectoral; pelvics with front lobe white, rear lobe as on disc; tail with 6 blackish-brown cross-bars, 1st faint, last two darkest & covering front 2/3 of both dorsal fins; lower surface pale yellowish.

Reaches 23 cm.

Habitat: soft bottoms.

Depth: 440-869 m.

SE Florida to Cuba.

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  • Marine
  • Marine Only
  • Offshore
  • Offshore Only
Water Column Position
  • Bottom
  • Bottom only
  • Sand & gravel
  • Soft bottom (mud/sand/gravel/beach/estuary/mangrove/seagrass)
  • Soft bottom only
  • Mud
FishBase Habitat
  • Bathydemersal
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)
  • GC endemic
  • Island (s)
  • All species
  • Resident
Climate Zone
  • Subtropical (23-35N, Florida / Carolinas / Bermuda)
  • Tropical (10-23N, Nicaragua / Cuba)
IUCN Red List
  • Data deficient
  • Listed
  • Not listed
Length Max
  • 23
Depth Range Min
  • 440
Depth Range Max
  • 869