Elasmobranchii (sharks and rays) > Rajiformes
(Skates and rays) > Rajidae
Etymology: Leucoraja: Greek, leykos = white + Latin, raja = a fish, Raja sp. (Ref. 45335). More on author: Linnaeus.
Environment: milieu / climate zone / depth range / distribution range
Marine; bathydemersal; depth range 30 - 550 m (Ref. 4426). Deep-water; 72°N - 27°N, 24°W - 34°E
Eastern Atlantic: Murmansk in Russia, Norway, southern Iceland, the Faroes, northern North Sea and Skagerrak to northern Morocco, including western Mediterranean and the Madeira Islands.
Length at first maturity / Size / Weight / Age
Maturity: Lm ?, range 75 - ? cm
Max length : 120 cm TL male/unsexed; (Ref. 35388); 111.0 cm TL (female)
soft rays: 0. Snout pronounced, rather pointed; disc rhomboid, with angled outer corners upper surface entirely spinulose, underside prickly on large areas; about 8 thorns usually in a complete row around inner margin of eye, small thorns on scapular, generally a row of about 50 thorns on each side of midline from shoulder to first dorsal fin; upper surface plain ashy-grey, underside white (Ref. 3167).
Found in relatively cold coastal waters and on upper parts of continental slopes (Ref. 3167). Most common at depths of around 200 m, but deeper in southern areas (Ref. 3167). Feed on all kinds of bottom animals, probably preferring fish (Ref. 3167). Oviparous. Distinct pairing with embrace. Young may tend to follow large objects, such as their mother (Ref. 205). Eggs are oblong capsules with stiff pointed horns at the corners deposited in sandy or muddy flats (Ref. 205). Egg capsules are 7.5-9.9 cm long and 4.5-4.7 cm wide (Ref. 41250). Maximum length for female is 111 cm (Ref. 41333).
Life cycle and mating behavior
Maturity | Reproduction | Spawning | Eggs | Fecundity | Larvae
Oviparous, paired eggs are laid. Embryos feed solely on yolk (Ref. 50449). Distinct pairing with embrace. Young may tend to follow large objects, such as their mother (Ref. 205).
McEachran, J.D. and K.A. Dunn, 1998. Phylogenetic analysis of skates, a morphologically conservative clade of elasmobranchs (Chondrichthyes: Rajidae). Copeia 1998(2):271-290. (Ref. 27314)
IUCN Red List Status (Ref. 123251)
CITES (Ref. 123416)
Threat to humans
Fisheries: minor commercial
ReferencesAquacultureAquaculture profileStrainsGeneticsAllele frequenciesHeritabilityDiseasesProcessingMass conversion
Estimates based on models
Preferred temperature (Ref. 115969
): 6.8 - 14.5, mean 9.5 °C (based on 370 cells).
Phylogenetic diversity index (Ref. 82805
= 0.5000 [Uniqueness, from 0.5 = low to 2.0 = high].
Bayesian length-weight: a=0.00309 (0.00144 - 0.00663), b=3.22 (3.05 - 3.39), in cm total length, based on LWR estimates for this (Sub)family-body shape (Ref. 93245
Trophic level (Ref. 69278
): 3.5 ±0.37 se; based on food items.
Resilience (Ref. 120179
): Low, minimum population doubling time 4.5 - 14 years (Assuming tm>5).
Vulnerability (Ref. 59153
): High to very high vulnerability (67 of 100) .