Marine and Freshwater Research Marine and Freshwater Research Society
Advances in the aquatic sciences

Reproductive biology of the eastern shovelnose ray, Aptychotrema rostrata (Shaw & Nodder, 1794), from Moreton Bay, Queensland, Australia

P. M. Kyne and M. B. Bennett

Marine and Freshwater Research 53(2) 583 - 589
Published: 22 April 2002


The eastern shovelnose ray, Aptychotrema rostrata (Rhinobatidae), is an endemic batoid common to the east coast of Australia. The reproductive cycle was studied in Moreton Bay, south-eastern Queensland, over a 14-month period. Aptychotrema rostrata is an aplacental yolksac viviparous species with an annual, seasonal reproductive cycle in Moreton Bay. Females mature at 54–66 cm total length, and males at 60–68 cm total length. Gravid females were observed during September–November and parturition occurred in November–December. Vitellogenesis does not proceed in parallel with gestation. Ovulation and copulation probably occur during July–September, resulting in a gestational period of 3–5 months. Uterine fecundity ranges from 4 to 18, with a significant positive relationship between uterine fecundity and maternal body length. In mature males, a peak in the proportion of mature spermatocysts in the testes was observed in July, whereas gonadosomatic index peaked in April.

Keywords: Rhinobatidae, elasmobranch, fecundity

© CSIRO 2002

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