v. 5.1 – 6 July 2017  view/download PDF

RHINOPRISTIFORMES: presumably a combination of Rhinobatiformes and Pristiformes, two nominal orders in which taxa had previously been placed

5 families • 12 genera • 65 species

3 genera • 8 species

Aptychotrema Norman 1926    a-, without; ptycho, fold; trema, hole, referring to absence of spiracular folds in nostrils

Aptychotrema rostrata (Shaw 1794)    beaked, referring to elongated snout

Aptychotrema timorensis Last 2004    ensis, suffix denoting place: Timor Sea, type locality

Aptychotrema vincentiana (Haacke 1885)    iana, belonging to: St. Vincent Gulf, South Australia, type locality

Trygonorrhina Müller & Henle 1838    having the nose of Trygon (=Dasyatis, stingrays) and the tail of Rhinobatos

Trygonorrhina dumerilii (Castelnau 1873)    in honor of Castelnau’s “late friend” August Duméril (1812-1870), herpetologist and ichthyologist, Muséum national d’Histoire naturelle (Paris)

Trygonorrhina fasciata Müller & Henle 1841    banded, referring to transverse bands on back, dorsal fin and tail

Zapteryx Jordan & Gilbert 1880    za-, very; pteryx, fin, referring to larger vertical fins compared to those of skates (Raja)

Zapteryx brevirostris (Müller & Henle 1841)    brevis, short; rostris, snout, referring to short and blunt snout

Zapteryx exasperata (Jordan & Gilbert 1880)    made rough, referring to back entirely covered with stout, close-set, stellated prickles

Zapteryx xyster Jordan & Evermann 1896    a scraper, perhaps referring to “entire lower surface covered with fine shagreen”

Family RHINOBATIDAE Guitarfishes
3 genera • 33 species

Acroteriobatus Giltay 1928    etymology not explained; perhaps acro-, top or peak; –terion, place or tool, allusions not evident; batus, latinization of batis or batos, Greek for a flat fish, usually applied to a skate or ray

Acroteriobatus annulatus (Müller & Henle 1841)    ringed, referring to white annular rings around body and tail

Acroteriobatus blochii (Müller & Henle 1841)    in honor of ichthyologist Marcus Élisier Bloch (1723-1799), whose collection furnished the authors with a preserved specimen of this ray

Acroteriobatus leucospilus (Norman 1926)    leukos, white; spilos, spot, referring to blue-gray spots on snout and pectoral fins

Acroteriobatus ocellatus (Norman 1926)    having little eyes, referring to numerous blue-gray eyespots, or ocelli, on back

Acroteriobatus omanensis Last, Henderson & Naylor 2016    –ensis, suffix denoting place: Gulf of Oman, presumed type locality (known only from landings at a fish market in Muttah, Muscat, Oman)   

Acroteriobatus salalah (Randall & Compagno 1995)    city in southern Oman where only specimen was obtained at a fish market

Acroteriobatus variegatus (Nair & Lal Mohan 1973)    referring to variegated markings of pectoral and pelvic margins

Acroteriobatus zanzibarensis (Norman 1926)    ensis, suffix denoting place: Zanzibar (Tanzania), type locality

Pseudobatos Last, Séret & Naylor 2016    pseudo-, false; batos, Greek for a flat fish, usually applied to a skate or ray but used here as an abbreviated surrogate for Rhinobatos, referring to previous inclusion of its species in that genus, i.e., false Rhinobatos (Peter R. Last, pers. comm.)

Pseudobatos glaucostigma (Jordan & Gilbert 1883)    glaucus, hoary blue; stigma, spot, referring to numerous slate-colored spots on disk

Pseudobatos horkelii (Müller & Henle 1841)   in honor of physician-botanist Johann Horkel (1769-1846), who provided a preserved specimen from the University of Berlin

Pseudobatos lentiginosus (Garman 1880)    freckled, referring to its dense freckling of small pale spots

Pseudobatos leucorhynchus (Günther 1867)    leukos, white; rhynchos, snout, referring to pale areas on snout

Pseudobatos percellens (Walbaum 1792)    smiting, perhaps referring to Walbaum’s mistaken belief that it can produce an electric shock when held in the hand (“Quando manu tangitur ictu electrico ferit.”)

Pseudobatos planiceps (Garman 1880)    planus, flat; –ceps, head, referring to broad, flat head

Pseudobatos prahli (Acero P. & Franke 1995)    in honor of Henry von Prahl (1948-1989), pioneering (“pionero”) Colombian marine biologist who studied Gorgona Island (type locality), and martyr of national biology (“mártir de la biología nacional”), martyr reference presumably alluding to his death in the bombing of Avianca Airlines Flight 203 over Bogotá

Pseudobatos productus (Ayres 1854)    produced, referring to pointed snout

Rhinobatos Linck 1790    presumably tautonymous with Raja rhinobatos (no species mentioned); rhine, rasp, a generic term for shark, referring to a shark’s rough skin; batos, Greek for a flat fish, usually applied to a skate or ray, referring to body form being intermediate between that of a shark and ray

Rhinobatos albomaculatus Norman 1930    albus, white; maculatus, spotted, referring to white eye spots or ocelli on dorsal surface

Rhinobatos annandalei Norman 1926    in honor of zoologist-anthropologist Thomas Nelson Annandale (1876-1924), Director, Indian Museum (Calcutta), who had published many papers on the fishes of India, including a 1909 account of this species

Rhinobatos austini Ebert & Gon 2017    in honor of “flat” shark enthusiast Austin Ebert [the senior author’s nephew] on the occasion of his graduation from the University of Southern California [his sister is similarly honored; see Pristiophorus lanae, Pristiophoriformes]

Rhinobatos borneensis Last, Séret & Naylor 2016    ensis, suffix denoting place: Malaysian Borneo (South China Sea), type locality, where specimens were first observed in a fish market

Rhinobatos holcorhynchus Norman 1922    holkos, furrow, groove or track; rhynchos, snout or rostrum, presumably referring to widely separated rostral ridge

Rhinobatos hynnicephalus Richardson 1846    hynnis, plowshare; cephalus, head, a Latin translation of its Chinese name, referring to shape of head and acuminated snout

Rhinobatos irvinei Norman 1931    in honor of botanist Frederick Robert Irvine (1898-1962), who collected many fishes off the coast of West Africa, including type of this one

Rhinobatos jimbaranensis Last, White & Fahmi 2006     ensis, suffix denoting place: Jimbaran Bay (Indonesia), type locality and only place where specimens have so far been collected

Rhinobatos lionotus Norman 1926    leios, smooth; notos, back, referring to minute skin denticles, presumably on dorsal surface, which are “smooth to the touch”

Rhinobatos manai White, Last & Naylor 2016    in honor of Ralph Mana, University of Papua New Guinea, whose “invaluable work on the BioPapua projects throughout Papua New Guinea has led to a considerable increase in our knowledge of the deepwater fish fauna of this region”

Rhinobatos nudidorsalis Last, Compagno & Nakaya 2004    nudus, bare, naked; dorsum, back, referring to smooth, denticle-free upper surface

Rhinobatos penggali Last, White & Fahmi 2006    Indonesian for shovel, referring to head shape of this and other “shovelnose rays”

Rhinobatos punctifer Compagno & Randall 1987    punctum, spot; fero, to carry or bear, referring to prominent regular pattern of white spots on dorsum

Rhinobatos rhinobatos (Linnaeus 1758)    rhine, rasp, a generic term for shark, referring to a shark’s rough skin; batis, Greek for a flat fish, usually applied to a skate or ray, referring to  body form intermediate between that of a shark and ray

Rhinobatos sainsburyi Last 2004    in honor of marine biologist Keith Sainsbury (b. 1952), for planning and managing the initial trawl surveys of the continental shelf of northwestern Australia, for recognizing the need to document the fauna before addressing more management-oriented questions, and for pioneering research that provided an excellent biological baseline

Rhinobatos schlegelii Müller & Henle 1841    in honor of ornithologist and herpetologist Hermann Schlegel (1804-1884), for his unhesitating support of the authors’ work

Rhinobatos whitei Last, Corrigan & Naylor 2014    in honor of colleague William White, for contributions to the taxonomic and biological knowledge of sharks and rays of the Western Central Pacific   

Family RHINIDAE Wedgefishes
3 genera • 10 species

Rhina Bloch & Schneider 1801    rhinos, nose, possibly referring to wide, blunt snout

Rhina ancylostoma Bloch & Schneider 1801    angkylos, bent, hooked or crooked; stoma, mouth, probably referring to bow-shaped mouth

Rhynchobatus Müller & Henle 1837    rhynchos, snout, referring to pointed snout; batus, latinization of batis or batos, Greek for a flat fish, usually applied to a skate or ray

Rhynchobatus australiae Whitley 1939    of Australia (name originally proposed as an Australian subspecies of R. djiddensis)

Rhynchobatus cooki Last, Kyne & Compagno 2016    in honor of the late Sidney F. Cook (d. 1997), shark fisheries biologist, a “pioneer in shark conservation” who participated in surveys of chondrichthyan fishes in South-East Asia at the time type specimens were collected [name incorrectly given as R. compagnoi Last & Kyne 2016 in the 2016 book Rays of the World]

Rhynchobatus djiddensis (Forsskål 1775)    ensis, suffix denoting place: Djidda (now Jedda), Saudi Arabia, on Red Sea, putative type locality

Rhynchobatus immaculatus Last, Ho & Chen 2013    im-, not; maculatus, spotted, referring to lack of a dark pectoral marking (rather than any white spots) otherwise present in small individuals of congeners

Rhynchobatus laevis (Bloch & Schneider 1801)    smooth, presumably referring to smooth body and small, cobblestone-like scales

Rhynchobatus luebberti Ehrenbaum 1915     in honor of Hans Julius Lübbert (1870-1951), German fisheries inspector and director

Rhynchobatus palpebratus Compagno & Last 2008    palpebra, eyelid, referring to dark, eyebrow-like marking on suborbital membrane

Rhynchobatus springeri Compagno & Last 2010    in honor of the late Stewart Springer (1906-1991), for his contribution to the systematics of Rhynchobatus

Rhynchorhina Séret & Naylor 2016    a composite name derived from Rhynchobatus and Rhina indicating how it exhibits features of both genera, i.e., a Rhynchobatus-like body with a rounded snout resembling Rhina

Rhynchorhina mauritaniensis Séret & Naylor 2016    ensis, suffix denoting place: Islamic Republic of Mauritania, where the only known material has been collected

Family GLAUCOSTEGIDAE Giant Guitarfishes
1 genus • 9 species

Glaucostegus Bonaparte 1846    glaucus, hoary blue; stego-, roof or cover, etymology not explained and allusion not evident as none of the three species Bonaparte included in the taxon (thouin, halavi, cemiculus) appear to be grayish-blue in color

Glaucostegus cemiculus (Geoffroy St. Hilaire 1817)   diminutive of cemo-, muzzle, i.e., small snout

Glaucostegus granulatus (Cuvier 1829)     diminutive of granum, grain, referring to shagreen-like granulated skin

Glaucostegus halavi (Forsskål 1775)    Arabic vernacular for this species, described from Saudi Arabia

Glaucostegus microphthalmus (Teng 1959)    micro-, small; ophthalmos, eye, much smaller than spiracle

Glaucostegus obtusus (Müller & Henle 1841)    blunt, referring to broad and blunt snout

Glaucostegus petiti (Chabanaud 1929)    in honor of zoologist-anatomist Georges Petit (1892-1973), Muséum national d’Histoire naturelle (Paris), who collected type

Glaucostegus spinosus (Günther 1870)     spiny, referring to compressed spines with dilated base along median line of back, on shoulder, and above eye and spiracle

Glaucostegus thouin (Anonymous [Lacepède] 1798)    in honor of botanist André Thouin (1746-1824), who helped secure a specimen in Holland and transport it to France

Glaucostegus typus (Anonymous [Bennett] 1830)    allusion not evident; Bennett may have intended this species to represent type of genus (type is assumed to be Rhinobatos rhinobatos based on tautonymy but accurate type designation has never been researched)

Family PRISTIDAE Sawfishes
2 genera • 5 species

Anoxypristis White & Moy-Thomas 1941    oxys, sharp; pristis, saw, referring to blade-like teeth of saw-like rostrum (originally named Oxypristis by Hoffman in 1912, but that name is preoccupied in insects; the prefix an-, not, was added to avoid homonymy)

Anoxypristis cuspidata (Latham 1794)    pointed, referring to rostral spines “shaped at the point more like the lancet used by surgeons in bleeding” [italics in original]

Pristis Linck 1790    tautonymous with Squalus pristis; saw, referring to elongated saw-like snout

Pristis clavata Garman 1906    club-shaped, allusion not explained nor evident

Pristis pectinata Latham 1794    comb-toothed, presumably referring to small, comb-like teeth, smaller than other sawfishes

Pristis pristis (Linnaeus 1758)    saw, referring to elongated saw-like snout (historical name for sawfishes, dating to at least Aristotle)

Pristis zijsron Bleeker 1851    etymology not explained; possibly a variant of zysron, meaning unknown but perhaps a Malay word meaning “slender” since Bleeker (who lived in the East Indies for nearly 20 years) used the name for the elongate Slender Threadfin Bream (Nemipteridae: Nemipterus zysron) and this sawfish is distinguished by its long and slender rostrum