Not just Shark
Pictures: Elasmodiver contains photos of sharks, skates, rays, and
chimaera's from around the world. Elasmodiver began as a simple web
based shark field guide to help divers find the best places to
encounter the different species of sharks and rays that live in
shallow water but it has slowly evolved into a much larger project
containing information on all aspects of shark diving and shark
There are now
more than 5000 shark pictures and sections on shark evolution,
biology, and conservation. There is a large library of reviewed
shark books, a constantly updated shark taxonomy page, a monster
list of shark links, and deeper in the site there are numerous
articles and stories about shark encounters. Elasmodiver is now so
difficult to check for updates, that new information and pictures
are listed on an Elasmodiver Updates Page that can be accessed here:
Coffin ray, Australian numb ray, Crampfish, Shorttailed electric ray.
Pair shaped body. Tail vestigial but with two
prominent upper lobes. Dorsum pale tan to brown, sometimes blotchy. Ventrum pale. Body appears flabby.
Spiracles small and with a pale fringe.
Maximum length 69cm.
Intertidal to 240m on sand, mud, and grass
flats sometimes around coral or rocky reefs.
Australian waters from Queensland to Western
Australia via south coast.
Nocturnal. Lays motionless under sand with only
spiracles protruding during the day. Main diet consists of bony fishes with
mollusks, crustaceans, and worms also being consumed. A week swimmer that
appears to flutter jerkily forward. The Coffin ray is capable of
producing an intense electric shock in the range of 200 volts that is used for
stunning prey and as an anti-predation tactic.
After following this ray for some time and repeatedly photographing it at
close range it was still reluctant to use its electric stunning ability. Instead
it slowly made its way to covered ground.
Exmouth Navy Jetty, Western Australia.
Some icthiologists recognised a similar
species, Hypnos subnigrum.
Reaction to divers:
Easily approached. moves away only when closely
disturbed. May shock if handled. Divers have reported severe shocks after
accidentally resting on this ray.
Two Coffin rays were spotted on a single night dive at Exmouth Navy Jetty
in W.A. This is a great dive with many sharks and rays always in residence.
Bookings can be made solely with Exmouth Dive Centre.
Other diving locations submitted by readers:
Sharks and Rays of Australia - Kelvin Aitken
Reef Sharks and Rays of the World
- Scott W. Michael.