Thursday, December 01, 2011

Sawfishes in Fiji? Alas not!

Wanted: ID pics from Fiji!
Guitarfish, Rhynchobatus laevis, (not dijiddensis as in the original caption) possibly the species seen here in Fiji - but maybe not! :)

Nice paper!
Sawfishes are among the most threatened Elasmobranchs and all seven species are listed as Critically Endangered by the IUCN. They generally inhabit shallow coastal waters of continental shelves and estuarine habitats and are not generally known from oceanic islands.

It was thus quite a coup when one turned up on a Fiji fish list.
Clinton Duffy, yes as in Grim the tourist, has followed up on the Fiji record and after meticulous research all the way to linguistics, he comes to the conclusion that the origin of the specimens is suspect and that there are no credible recent records of Sawfishes having been sighted or caught in the archipelago.
You can read a preview here and get the whole paper here.

Clinton is now looking at Shovelnose Rays, Genus Rhynchobatus.
They are rather frequently sighted in Fiji but nobody seems to have identified the exact species. Does any of our readers have any good ID pictures he would be willing to share with Clinton?
Any help would be much appreciated!


1 comment:

HelenTheReef said...

I have finally found a couple of nice underwater photos taken by Alex Hill of Diveaway on the Coral Coast. but (as a committed Luddite) can't figure out how to post it here.... Helen Sykes