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Author: Capape, 1977

Dasyatis tortonesei Capape, 1977

Diagnosis: snout obtuse, but a little produced, its tip projecting a little beyond front margin of disc; disc rhomboid, front margin more or less sinuous, hind margin convex; tail 1.2-1.4 times length of disc, with a relatively short and narrow membranous fold below (originating at level of spine) and a dorsal ridge on top (from spine almost to tip of tail). Distance between fifth gill-slits more than half their distance from mouth; floor of mouth with 3 filamentous papillae. Upper surfaces without large tubercles or bucklers on disc, but more or less covered with denticles in larger specimens, as well as large broad-based thorns on tail. Colour: upper surfaces olive-brown to greyish; underside white with a brown border around disc. Size: to 80 cm disc width, usually 65 cm.

Habitat: benthic over sandy and muddy bottoms, from shallow water to about 200 m; moderately abundant. Food: bottom-living invertebrates and fishes. Reproduction: ovoviviparous; gestation about 4 months; 6-9 young produced.

Distribution: Mediterranean, common along Tunisian coasts, also Sicily and Italian coasts; perhaps more widespread when distinguished from D. pastinaca.

Tortonese's stingray (Dasyatis tortonesei)