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ANDY MURCH ELASMO GEEK

 

WHAT IS ELASMODIVER?

Not just a huge collection of Shark Pictures: Elasmodiver.com contains images of sharks, skates, rays, and a few 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 photography.

There are now more than 10,000 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:

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Shark picture - green sawfish

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YELLOW STINGRAY

 

 

Juvenile yellow spotted stingray

 

Unusually dark color morph from Oyster Bed Lagoon, Utila.

 

Photograph copyright Andy Murch

 

View all available Yellow Spotted Stingray Pictures in the Shark Pictures Database

Common Names: Yellow stingray, Yellow spotted stingray, Lemon ray.

 

Latin Name: Urobatis jamaicensis

 

Family: Urobatidae

 

Identification: Disc circular or slightly oval, no dorsal fin, tail shorter than disc length. Dorsum pale with dark and light spots and blotches. Overall appearance may be very pale or boldly patterned depending on the rays habitat.

The almost black underlying skin coloration with bright yellow dots in the lower image is very unusual. This ray was found in a dark muddy lagoon where a corresponding color would be appropriate. Why this ray has accentuated yellow spots that make it stand out is unclear.

 

Size: Maximum length 60cm, Disc width 37.5cm.

 

Habitat: Sandy areas often around coral reefs, bays, and lagoons. Intertidal to 25m.

 

Abundance: Common in Florida and Northern Caribbean.

 

Distribution: North Carolina to Trinidad.

 

Behavior: Lies motionless often covered by sand. When searching for food (crustaceans) creates a depression in the sand by flapping its anterior disc margin.

 

Reproduction: Ovoviviparous.

 

Photographs: From top: Grand Cayman, Florida Keys, Utila.

 

Similar species: There are no other urolophid stingray species in the caribbean. The similarly shaped chupare stingray is easily distinguishable by its larger size, plain colouration and long whiplike tail devoid of finfolds.

 

Reaction to divers: The yellow spotted stingray will allow a close approach with slow non threatening movements. This ray will bolt when disturbed.

 

Diving logistics: This such a commonly seen species that it can be found on almost any shallow dive within its range. Shore diving from the Florida coast would be a good place to look. On Grand Cayman I found many in the lagoons inside the reefs on the North and South shores in very shallow water. Inside the reef at Spotts Beach is a good area to snorkel. On the Atlantic coast of Florida I saw Yellow stingrays on every shallow dive that I did during the summer. 

On Utila it may be possible to find this ray displaying the dark color morph in Oyster Bed lagoon. During a one week period while snorkeling every day I found one solitary specimen.

 

Other locations reported by readers:

Further reading:

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