Reticulated Whiptail Ray
The reticulated whiptail ray has a light brown body with dark brown spots. Its underside, however, is a solid off-white. Its snout is pointed, and when intact, its tail can reach three times its body size. The tail usually has one barb on it.
It favors shallow, sandy habitats near the coast, but has ventured into waters of up to 50 meters deep. It prefers habitats in beaches, lagoons, and coral reefs.
A gestation period for a reticulated whiptail ray is around a year, and a female will give birth to approximately three to five pups in the summer.
It feeds on small fish, shrimp, crabs, worms, and sometimes jellyfish.
Its body can reach widths of 6.6 feet. Its total body length (tail included) can be up to 20 feet. The largest individuals weigh up to 260 pounds.
It has been spotted in a wide range of waters. It has been found in the Indian Ocean as well as the Mediterranean Sea. The ray has been found in several locations in the Pacific Ocean, from Taiwan and Southern Japan to Australia, Malaysia, and Indonesia. It may also enter fresh water at times.
The reticulated whiptail ray seems to be uncommon throughout most of its population range. However, it appears to be common near some parts of northern Australia. Its population has been trending downwards recently.
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