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 hakelensis is one of these; this species was fist described in 1980 by H. Cappetta. The Rhinobatos hakelensis has a medium sized rostrum (nose). The hakelensis body is also midsize.
Slit pairs are always desirable and this ray is no exception. This amazing piece begs to be shown off. The pictures are great, but seeing the detail in person really brings the past to life.