Order TORPEDINIFORMES

COMMENTS
v.7.0 – 1 Feb. 2017  view/download PDF

5 families • 15 genera • 64 species

Family PLATYRHINIDAE Fanrays
2 genera • 5 species

Platyrhina Müller & Henle 1838    platy, broad; rhinos, snout, presumably referring to short, broadly rounded snout

Platyrhina hyugaensis Iwatsuki, Zhang & Nakaya 2011    ensis, suffix denoting place: Hyuga Nada Sea (southern Japan), where authors believe species to be endemic and common

Platyrhina psomadakisi White & Last 2016    in honor of Peter N. Psomadakis, Food and Agriculture Association (Rome), “whose efforts to obtain valuable specimens of sharks and rays, as well as many teleosts, from a number of poorly sampled locations in the northern Indian Ocean have greatly improved our understanding of the biogeography of this complex region”

Platyrhina sinensis (Bloch & Schneider 1801)     ensis, suffix denoting place: Sinica (China); description based from a drawing of a Chinese specimen

Platyrhina tangi Iwatsuki, Zhang & Nakaya 2011    in honor of Chinese ichthyologist D.-S. Tang, whose P. limboonkengi 1933 the authors synonymized with P. sinensis

Platyrhinoidis Garman 1881    oides, having the form of: referring to similarity to Platyrhina

Platyrhinoidis triseriata (Jordan & Gilbert 1880)    tri-, three; series, row, referring to three rows of hooklike spines extending along back and tail


Family TORPEDINIDAE Electric Rays
2 genera • 18 species

Tetronarce Gill 1862    tetra-, four, referring, according to Gill (1895), to “four-sided form” of T. occidentalis, perhaps an allusion to how the ray’s disc (two pectoral fins) and two pelvic fins appear as four sides (or lobes) when seen from above (Marcelo R. de Carvalho, pers. comm.); narce, from narke, numbness, an ancient Greek word used for any electric fish, based on their ability to cause a numbing sensation [Gill attempted to change spelling to Tetranarke in 1895, saying Tetronarke was “purely a printer’s blunder,” but original spelling is retained]

Tetronarce californica (Ayres 1855)    ica, belonging to: California, “a very interesting addition to the fauna of California”

Tetronarce cowleyi Ebert, Haas & de Carvalho 2015    in honor of Paul Cowley, South African Institute for Aquatic Biodiversity, for his contributions to the study of fishes in southern Africa

Tetronarce formosa (Haas & Ebert 2006)    connoting both Ilha Formosa, the historical name of the type locality, Taiwan, and the Latin word for beautiful, referring to purplish brown coloration of fresh specimens

Tetronarce nobiliana (Bonaparte 1835)    ana, belonging to: Leopoldo Nobili (1784-1835), Italian physicist who studied animal electricity

Tetronarce occidentalis (Storer 1843)    western, referring to its distribution in the Western Atlantic (compared to distribution of the similar T. nobiliana in the Eastern Atlantic)

Tetronarce puelcha (Lahille 1926)    etymology not explained; since name is used for other Argentine taxa (e.g., bivalves), it may refer to the Puelche people and/or territory of central Argentina, which existed prior to the arrival of Europeans

Tetronarce tokionis Tanaka 1908    is, genitive singular of: Tokyo (type was obtained in a Tokyo fish market)

Tetronarce tremens (de Buen 1959)    trembling, presumably referring to its ability to produce an electric shock

Torpedo Duméril 1806    presumably tautonymous with Raja torpedo (no species mentioned); Latin word historically used for any electric fish, derived from torpere, meaning numbness or paralysis

Torpedo adenensis Carvalho, Stehmann & Manilo 2002    ensis, suffix denoting place: Gulf of Aden, only known locality

Torpedo andersoni Bullis 1962    in honor of fishery research biologist William W. Anderson, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, “colleague and mentor, whose labors have contributed immeasurably to our knowledge of the marine fauna of the southeastern United States”

Torpedo bauchotae Cadenat, Capapé & Desoutter 1978    in honor of Marie-Louise Bauchot (b. 1928), ichthyologist and assistant manager, Muséum national d’Histoire naturelle (Paris)

Torpedo fuscomaculata Peters 1855    fuscus, dark; maculatus, spotted, referring to numerous closely packed dark brown spots seen on some specimens

Torpedo mackayana Metzelaar 1919   ana, belonging to: “the Hon Bar. Mackay, one of the promoters of the expedition” that collected fishes, including this one, in the Dutch West Indies (1904-1905)

Torpedo marmorata Risso 1810    marbled, referring to mottled or marbled coloration

Torpedo panthera Olfers 1831    referring to its leopard-like spots

Torpedo sinuspersici Olfers 1831    sinus, gulf; persici, Persian, described from Persian Gulf

Torpedo suessii Steindachner 1898    patronym not identified but probably in honor of Steindachner’s friend, geologist Eduard Suess (1831-1914), who suggested that Steindachner study fossil fishes

Torpedo torpedo (Linnaeus 1758)    Latin word historically used for any electric fish, derived from torpere, meaning numbness or paralysis


Family HYPNIDAE Coffin Ray

Hypnos Duméril 1852    sleep, referring to numbing effect of its electric discharge

Hypnos monopterygius (Shaw 1795)    mono-, one; pterygius, fin; struck by the strangeness of this ray’s appearance, Shaw surmised that it might be a “single-finned” member of the monkfish genus Lophius, perhaps referring to how its pelvic fins are joined together to form a disc


Family NARCINIDAE Numbfishes
5 genera • 31 species

Benthobatis Alcock 1898    benthos, of the deep, presumably referring to occurrence of B. moresbyi at 430 fathoms; batis, Greek for a flat fish, usually applied to a skate or ray

Benthobatis kreffti Rincon, Stehmann & Vooren 2001    in honor of Gerhard Krefft (1912-1993), Institute für Seefischerei (Hamburg), who first collected this species in 1968, for his contributions to elasmobranch systematics, particularly among elasmobranchs from the southwest Atlantic

Benthobatis marcida Bean & Weed 1909    withered or weak, possibly referring to its “lax and flabby” skin, “making it difficult to see the true shape of the creature and take its measurements”

Benthobatis moresbyi Alcock 1898    in memory of Capt. Robert Moresby (1794-1854), British Royal Navy, “whose surveys (1834-38) in the seas where this curious fish is found are known to all readers of Darwin’s ‘Coral-Reefs’”

Benthobatis yangi Carvalho, Compagno & Ebert 2003    in honor of Hung-Chia Yang, Taiwanese Fisheries Research Institute, for his research on Taiwanese cartilaginous fishes and superb fish illustrations

Diplobatis Bigelow & Schroeder 1948    diplo-, twofold, referring to nostril subdivided into two separate apertures; batis, Greek for a flat fish, usually applied to a skate or ray

Diplobatis colombiensis Fechhelm & McEachran 1984    ensis, suffix denoting place: coast of northern Colombia, only known area of occurrence

Diplobatis guamachensis Martín Salazar 1957   ensis, suffix denoting place: El Guamache, port city near where type was collected in the Gulf of Cariaco, Sucre, Venezuela

Diplobatis ommata (Jordan & Gilbert 1890)    eyed, referring to ocellated spot on center of disk

Diplobatis pictua Palmer 1950    painted, referring to dorsal surface with highly variable color pattern of spots, mottlings and ocelli of various sizes

Discopyge Heckel 1846    disc, disk; pyge, rump, referring to pelvic fins, which are merged beneath the tail to form a continuous disc

Discopyge castelloi Menni, Rincón & García 2008    in honor of marine biologist Hugo P. Castello, who suggested to the authors that this species could be new to science

Discopyge tschudii Heckel 1846    in honor of Swiss naturalist and explorer Johann Jakob von Tschudi (1818-1889), who collected type

Narcine Henle 1834    from narke, numbness, ancient Greek word used for any electric ray, based on their ability to cause a numbing sensation

Narcine atzi Carvalho & Randall 2003    in honor of James W. Atz (1915-2013), Curator Emeritus, Department of Ichthyology, American Museum of Natural History, for “his many contributions to different aspects of ichthyology, and for his unparalleled enthusiasm for the study of fishes”

Narcine baliensis Carvalho & White 2016    ensis, suffix denoting place: the island of Bali, close to type locality between islands of Bali and Lombok, Indonesia

Narcine bancroftii (Griffith & Smith 1834)    in honor of Edward Bancroft (1744-1821), American physician-naturalist (and double-agent spy during the American Revolution), who studied electric fishes and painted the illustration upon which description was based

Narcine brasiliensis (Olfers 1831)    ensis, suffix denoting place: Brazil, type locality (occurs throughout Western Atlantic)

Narcine brevilabiata Bessednov 1966    brevis, short; labiatus, lipped, referring to shorter anterior nasal lobe compared to N. prodorsalis

Narcine brunnea Annandale 1909     brown, referring to “warm chocolate-brown” dorsal surface

Narcine entemedor Jordan & Starks 1895    Spanish equivalent of “Intimidator” but allusion is not explained (perhaps the name of a ship?)

Narcine insolita Carvalho, Séret & Compagno 2002    unusual or uncommon, referring to unusual and unique disparate dimensions of its dorsal fins, with the first dorsal being much larger than the second

Narcine leoparda Carvalho 2001    referring to distinctive dorsal color pattern, comprised of numerous small, white, leopard-like spots

Narcine lingula Richardson 1846    diminutive of lingua, tongue, probably referring to “slight point at the central bridle” of upper lip

Narcine maculata (Shaw 1804)     spotted, “thickly marked with moderately large, round, black spots”

Narcine oculifera Carvalho, Compagno & Mee 2002     oculus, eye; fera, to bear or carry, referring to its bulging eyes

Narcine prodorsalis Bessednov 1966    pro-, forward; dorsalis, of the back, referring to anterior position of first dorsal fin

Narcine rierai (Lloris & Rucabado 1991)    in honor of the authors’ friend Ignacia Riera, Chief of the Spanish Fisheries Office (Seychelles)

Narcine timlei (Bloch & Schneider 1801)    etymology not explained, possibly referring to Tamil Nadu, the Indian state where type locality (Tranquebar) is located (“Habitat ad Tranquebariam Timlei Malais dicta”)

Narcine vermiculata Breder 1928    referring to numerous, irregular white vermiculations on dorsal surface

Narcinops Whitley 1940    ops, appearance, referring to similarity to (and previous placement of N. tasmaniensis in) Narcine

Narcinops lasti (Carvalho & Séret 2002)     in honor of friend and colleage Peter R. Last, CSIRO Marine & Atmospheric Research, for his studies on the taxonomy and distribution of Australian elasmobranchs

Narcinops nelsoni (Carvalho 2008)    in honor of Gareth Jon Nelson, Carvalho’s Ph.D. advisor at the American Museum of Natural History, for his “unique and meaningful contributions to both ichthyology and comparative biology in general”

Narcinops ornata (Carvalho 2008)    handsome or beautiful, referring to spectacular dorsal color pattern, one of the most intricate in the genus

Narcinops tasmaniensis (Richardson 1841)    ensis, suffix denoting place: Tasmania, type locality (occurs from New South Wales to Western Australia)

Narcinops westraliensis (McKay 1966)     ensis, suffix denoting place: Western Australia, only known area of occurrence


Family NARKIDAE Sleeper Rays
5 genera • 9 species

Electrolux Compagno & Heemstra 2007    electro-, referring to its well-developed electrogenic properties, and lux, light, referring to how the discovery of this species sheds light on the rich and poorly known fish diversity of the Western Indian Ocean; in addition, its “vigorous sucking action” while feeding “may rival a well-known electrical device used to suck the detritus from carpets, furniture, and other dust-gathering surfaces in modern homes”

Electrolux addisoni Compagno & Heemstra 2007    in honor of Mark Addison (b. 1967), Managing Director of Blue Wilderness dive charters of Widenham, KwaZulu-Natal, for collecting holotype and instigating capture of paratype; in addition, his knowledge of the marine fishes of South Africa contributed to the authors’ survey research

Heteronarce Regan 1921    etymology not explained; possibly hetero-, different, i.e, a different kind of Narcine

Heteronarce bentuviai (Baranes & Randall 1989)    in honor of Adam Ben-Tuvia, Hebrew University of Jerusalem, for his valuable contributions to the knowledge of Israeli fishes

Heteronarce garmani Regan 1921    in honor of Harvard ichthyologist-herpetologist Samuel Garman (1843-1927), for his his work on selachian fishes

Heteronarce mollis (Lloyd 1907)    soft, allusion not evident but possibly referring to the soft body characteristic of electric rays

Narke Kaup 1826    ancient Greek word for numbness, used for any electric fish, based on their ability to cause a numbing sensation

Narke capensis (Gmelin 1789)    ensis, suffix denoting place: the cape, referring to distribution in the Cape of Good Hope (to Madagascar)

Narke dipterygia (Bloch & Schneider 1801)    di-, two; pterygion, small fin, probably referring to a fold on each side of the short caudal fin (“cauda diptergyia”)

Narke japonica (Temminck & Schlegel 1850)    Japanese, referring to type locality in southern Japan (but occurs to South China Sea near Hong Kong)

Temera Gray 1831    etymology not explained nor evident, perhaps derived from a local Indian name

Temera hardwickii Gray 1831    in honor of soldier and naturalist Thomas Hardwicke (1755-1835), who collected type

Typhlonarke Waite 1909    typhlos, blind, being sightless species of Narke

Typhlonarke aysoni (Hamilton 1902)    in honor of Lake Falconer Ayson (1855-1927), Chief Inspector of Fisheries for New Zealand, “in charge of the experimental trawling” that collected type