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Species: Rhinobatos spinosus, Spiny guitarfish

All Families:   All Genera:   All Species:

skin rough; spines of head & body abundant, large
C tips rounded
mouth straight
nostril front lobe slender
pectorals not overlapping pelvics

Rhinobatos spinosus Gunther, 1870


Spiny guitarfish


Body shark-like; head and adjoining pectoral fins forming a distinctly elongate triangular structure; snout relatively long, its 2 cartilage ridges very narrow, close together, with a small, short groove at the base; thornlike, back-pointing spines with oval bases along entire length of those cartilages in 2 irregular rows, with smaller spines among and between the larger ones; nostrils without a lateral skin fold, distance between outer angle of nostrils ½ distance between mouth and snout tip, front lobe of nostril very slender; mouth nearly straight;  rear edges of pectoral fins not overlapping front of pelvic fins; two large, triangular, equal-sized dorsal fins; tail fin asymetrical and without a distinct lower lobe, tips rounded; skin covered with small denticles, entire upper surface rough; compressed spines with dilated bases along center of back, on shoulders, and above the eyes and spiracles.

Probably plainly colored; snout white.

Grows to at least 34 cm.

Inhabits shallow coastal waters, including lagoons, bays and estuaries.

Depth: 0-15 m?

The southwest Gulf of California.

Note: Doubtfully valid; poorly known, may be the juvenile of another species.

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  • Marine
  • Marine Only
  • Inshore Only
  • Inshore
Water Column Position
  • Bottom only
  • Bottom
  • Soft bottom (mud/sand/gravel/beach/estuary/mangrove/seagrass)
  • Beach
  • Mud
  • Sand & gravel
  • Soft bottom only
FishBase Habitat
  • Demersal
Feeding Group
  • No Data
  • Carnivore
  • Mobile benthic gastropods/bivalves
  • Mobile benthic crustacea (shrimps/crabs)
  • No Data
  • Bony fishes
Egg Type
  • No data
  • Live birth
  • No pelagic larva
Global Endemism
  • East Pacific endemic
  • Tropical Eastern Pacific (TEP) endemic
Regional Endemism
  • Cortez province endemic
  • TEP endemic
  • Continental TEP endemic
  • Continent only
  • Continent
  • Resident
Climate Zone
  • Northern Subtropical (Cortez Province + Sinaloan Gap)
IUCN Red List
  • Not evaluated / Listed
  • Not listed
Length Max
  • 34
Depth Range Min
  • 0
Depth Range Max
  • 15