Monday, June 28, 2010
June 28, 2010 : Guitarfish
The guitarfish are a family, Rhinobatidae, of rays. The guitarfish are known for an elongated body with a flattened head and trunk and small ray like wings. The combined range of the various species is tropical, subtropical and temperate waters worldwide. They often travel in large schools.
Adult guitarfish grow to a length of between 1.5 metres (4.9 ft) and 1.8 metres (5.9 ft). These fish are bottom feeders, preferring small crustaceans. Their teeth are small and numerous, usually arranged in 65 or 70 rows. Guitarfish are ovoviviparous, with the young hatching out of the eggs after leaving the mother's body.
Guitarfish have a body form intermediate between those of sharks and rays. The tail has a typical ray-like form, but in many species the head has a triangular, or shovel-like shape, rather than the disc-shape formed by fusion with the pectoral fin found in other rays.
Notable species include the shovelnose guitarfish, Rhinobatos productus.