IUCN threat status:

Near Threatened (NT)

Comprehensive Description

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  Common names: devil ray (English), mobula (English), diablo (Espanol), manta (Espanol)
Mobula thurstoni (Lloyd, 1908)

Smoothtail devil ray,     Smoothtail mobula

Head projecting relatively short, with pair of horn-like extensions; large triangular "wings" (pectoral fin flaps) with a double bend to front margin; front edge of margin of pectoral fin curves up and over spiracle; mouth on underside of head; teeth in bands in both jaws, forming low, pavement-like mosaic; filter plates in gills with 15-20 side lobes, last lobe leaf shaped, separate at tips; tail moderately long (about 60% of disc width in adults), with its base flattened, without spine; upper surface of body with scattered denticles.

Dark blue to black on upper surface; inside mouth pale; dorsal fin with white tip;  underside mainly white, becoming silvery towards pectoral fin tips,  a dark greenish patch usually evident on each side near posterior edge of pectoral fin.

Grows to at least 180 cm disc width and 54 Kg; size at birth 65-85 cm disc width.

Habitat: pelagic in coastal waters. Often forms huge schools containing several hundred individuals.

Depth: to 100 m.

Probably tropical circumglobal, known for certain from the eastern and western Pacific, eastern Atlantic, and Indian Ocean; ranges from the central Gulf of California to Chile.   


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© Shorefishes of the tropical eastern Pacific online information system. www.stri.org/sftep

Source: Shorefishes of the Tropical Eastern Pacific Online Information System

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