Spotted Eagle Ray
This large eagle ray is distributed throughout the tropical zones of the Atlantic, Pacific and Indian oceans. It migrates seasonally outside these areas with the summertime warming of the sea. Large shoals, sometimes numbering hundreds of specimens have been seen at sea. It is one of the largest eagle rays sometimes exceeding 10ft (3m) in width. Also, due to the thickness of its body it is rather heavy weighing 400 to 500lbs (181 to 227kg).
It has narrow, pointed pictorial fins and a distinctly shaped head. The long whip-like tail has, at the base, long serrated-edged spines or barbs which are venomous. They can inflict serious wounds with their tails although they generally will not get too close to humans. The rays often swim near the surface of the water and sometimes jump out if they are being chased or maybe just practicing maneuvers.
Its light brownback is conspicuously marked with white or yellowish spots. The ray feeds heavily on the larger mollusks, especially clams and oysters. It will also dine on octopuses, prawns and marine worms.
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