BHI Catalog:  Fishes:  Sharks, Rays & Skates:  Rhinobatos whitfieldi Ray-Guitarfish - Original Fossil

  Rhinobatos whitfieldi Ray-Guitarfish - Original Fossil  (BHI #127347)
Rhinobatos whitfieldi Ray-Guitarfish - Original Fossil 
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Rhinobatos is a genus of guitarfish. This genus is still living in some tropical seas today. They have the appearance between that of a skate and a shark. The living species swims as a shark moving their tail and caudal fin in a side-to-side motion. They bury themselves in sandy, muddy and often weedy sea floors, near reefs waiting for food. Their diet consists mainly of invertebrates and small fish.

Rhinobatos are mid-sized rays. They have a pointed rostrum, with dorsal fins located near the posterior. The caudal fin lacks a lower lobe. Their skin was covered with seed like placoid scales. Their tiny teeth have lateral extensions that link them together forming a pavement; a large tooth may reach the size of a pinhead.

Fossil Rhinobatos would have lived in much the same way as its living counterpart. There are four known species of guitarfish from the Lebanese provinces of Hakel and Hajula. Rhinobatos whitfieldi is one of these; this species was named in honor of Professor R. P. Whitfield. Rhinobatos whitfieldi has the shortest rostrum (nose) of the Rhinobatos from Hakel and Hajula. It also does not seem to reach as large a size as the other species.

Age    Cenomanian, Late Cretaceous 95 - 99 MYA
Locality    Hajula, Lebanon
Size     ~ 8" l x 4" h (20 x 10 cm)

Price:  $2,000.00

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