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Marine Animal Encyclopedia

Round Stingray Urolophus halleri

As its name suggests, the round stingray has an almost circular disk. This species and its relatives the “stingarees” have shorter tails than other stingrays and the tail ends in a leaf-shaped fin. The round stingray varies in color from pale to dark brown and can be either plain or mottled with darker spots and reticulations. These rays are most often seen in summer, when they move inshore into inlets and bays to forage for invertebrates among seagrass and bask in the warm-water shallows. Females arrive in the shallows around June ready to breed, and the males, who are already there, swim along the shoreline looking for suitable mates. Sexually mature females are reported to give off an electrical field that the males can sense. Females give birth about three months after mating to about six live young. The juveniles stay inshore, where there are fewer predators, until they mature. When out foraging, they do not stray too far, remaining within an area of about 1 square mile (2.5 square km).

Predators of the round stingray include the northern elephant seal and the black sea bass. They are also likely to be hunted by large carnivorous fish such as sharks. The round stingray’s sting is painful and can cause minor injuries.

Round Stingray habitat mapzoom image
  • Order Rajiformes
  • Length 23 in (58 cm) including tail
  • Weight 3 lb (1.4 kg)
  • Depth 0–300 ft (0–90 m)
  • Distribution Eastern Pacific