• Size

    13.5 feet (4 m) in length, including its tail, and 4.6 feet (1.4 m) in width
  • Diet

    Crabs, shrimp and shelled invertebrates
  • Range

    Indo-West Pacific from the Bay of Bengal to New Guinea, north to the Ryukyu Islands and south to Northern Australia
  • Habitat

    Inshore over sandy bottom in the open and near reefs

Physical Characteristics

Size

  • This is a large stingray that can reach 13.5 feet (4 m) in length, including its tail, and will grow to about 4.6 feet (1.4 m) in width. The newborn pups, on average, are about 8 inches (20 cm) wide.

Body Composition

  • The tail is long and slender (up to three times the body length), tapers to a fine point and has a single spine (or barb).
  • Snout is broadly triangular and the disc-shaped body is slightly longer than wide.

Color

  • Upper surface of the adult’s body and tail is sandy brown in color and covered in a pattern of closely spaced leopard-like circular brown to black rings.
  • Juvenile has gray to brown coloration with larger black spots.

 

Animal Fact

The leopard whipray’s tail can be up to three times its body length.

Diet / Feeding

  • Leopard whipray feeds on crabs, shrimp and shelled invertebrates.

Range / Habitat

Range

  • Leopard whipray occurs in the Indo-West Pacific from the Bay of Bengal to New Guinea, north to the Ryukyu Islands and south to Northern Australia. It is not present in the Western Indian Ocean.

Habitat

  • This stingray is found inshore over sandy bottom in the open and near reefs.

Reproduction & Growth

  • This species is ovoviviparous.

Conservation Status

  • “Vulnerable” on the IUCN Red List.

Additional Information

  • Sometimes appears as by-catch in trawl nets, deep gill nets and hook-and-line fisheries.
  • Leopard whipray is valued for its meat, skin and cartilage in some locations.
  • Habitat destruction is also negatively affecting the leopard whipray.
  • Also known as Bleeker’s variegated whipray, and often mistaken for other similar species, such as Himantura fava and Himantura uarnak.

Sources

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