Family: UROTRYGONIDAE, Round Rays, Round Stingrays
ROUND STINGRAYS, ROUND RAYS
Round rays are small to moderated sized (16-80 cm), differing from stingrays largely in the length and shape of the tail. In Urotrygonids the greatly flattened disc is not more than 1.3 times as broad as long; pectoral fins are continuous around the sides of the head; snout rounded, angular to pointed; eyes and spiracle on top of head, nostrils (with a curtain between them and mouth), mouth and gill slits on underside; floor of mouth with fleshy papillae; jaw teeth are small, numerous, in bands; tail slender, tapering, its length ~ equal to disc length, equipped with a well developed tail fin & a large venomous spine; no dorsal fins; skin on upper surface smooth or with denticles and thorns.
The family contains approximately 40 species in 3 genera. Three (1 W Atlantic, 2 endemics) in two genera occur in the Greater Caribbean and are included here.
PREPARED BY D ROSS ROBERTSON, AFTER MCEACHRAN & CARVALHO (2002)