The Bottlenose wedgefish has a distinctive shape that resembles a cross between a shark and a ray. However, it is actually a member of the ray family. The front of its body is flattened and wide, with a bottle shaped snout and flattened pectoral fins. The rest of its body and the large dorsal fins create a shark-like appearance. Adult can reach a length of approximately 10 feet (3 m) in length. Juvenile coloration is grayish-brown with white spots and a black spot on the pectoral fin. There are three white spots above each black spot. Adults are considerably darker in color, appearing almost black from above with white spots and a black spot on the pectoral fin. There are three white spots above each black spot. These markings can be difficult to see in Ocean Voyager.
  • Size

    10 feet (3.1 m) and 500 lbs. (227 kg)
  • Diet

    Feeds primarily on benthic crustaceans, mollusks and bottom-dwelling fish
  • Range

    In the subtropical waters of the Indo-West Pacific (including the Red Sea and the Persian Gulf) from the East African coast to Taiwan, the Philippines and south to Australia
  • Habitat

    Usually is encountered at depths from 0 feet to 197 feet (0-60 m) on soft bottoms close to shore or coral reefs

Physical Characteristics

Size

  • Can reach 10 feet (3.1 m) in length and 500 lbs. (227 kg).
  • The largest female on exhibit is roughly 7.9 feet (240cm) in length.

Body Composition

  • Bottlenose wedgefish has a distinctive shape that resembles a cross between a shark and a ray. However, it is actually a member of the ray family.
  • The front of its body is flattened and wide, with a bottle shaped snout and flattened pectoral fins. The rest of its body and the large dorsal fins create a shark-like appearance.

Color

  • Juvenile coloration is grayish-brown with white spots and a black spot on the pectoral fin. There are three white spots above each black spot.
  • Adults are considerably darker in color, appearing almost black from above with white spots and a black spot on the pectoral fin. There are three white spots above each black spot. These markings can be difficult to see in Ocean Voyager.

 

Animal Fact

"Critically Endangered” on the IUCN Red List

Diet / Feeding

  • Feeds primarily on benthic crustaceans, mollusks and bottom-dwelling fish

 

Range / Habitat

Range

  • Bottlenose wedgefish occurs in the subtropical waters of the Indo-West Pacific (including the Red Sea and the Persian Gulf) from the East African coast to Taiwan, the Philippines and south to Australia

Habitat

  • Usually is encountered at depths from 0 feet to 197 feet (0-60 m) on soft bottoms close to shore or coral reefs

Reproduction & Growth

  • This wedgefish is ovoviviparous, meaning it produces eggs that hatch within the mother’s body and the young are born live

Conservation Status

  • “Critically Endangered” on the IUCN Red List

Additional Information

  • Commonly caught by gillnet, trawl and longline fisheries
  • This species is unfortunately an occasional victim of the shark fin trade

Sources

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