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Blue Stingray

marine life of Namibia

Introduction: The blue stingray (Dasyatis chrysonota), is a stingray of the family Dasyatidae, found in the south-east Atlantic Ocean on the Namibian coastline. The flattened bodies of stingrays allow them to effectively conceal themselves in their environment by agitating the sand and hiding beneath it. As their eyes are on top of their bodies and their mouths on the undersides, stingrays cannot see their prey. They use smell and electro-receptors (ampullae of Lorenzini) similar to those of sharks.

The stinger is on their tail and may reach a length of approximately 35 cm. On its underside it has 2 grooves with venom glands and the stinger is covered with a thin layer of skin, known as the integumentary sheath, in which the venom is concentrated. It is used exclusively in self-defence and they are sometimes called whip-tail stingrays.

Distribution: Found from the surface to 100m.

Diet: Stingrays feed primarily on molluscs, crustaceans, and occasionally on small fish.

Breeding: The blue stingray is ovoviviparous (giving birth to live young), 5 to 15 juveniles being born in summer after a 9 month gestation period. When a male is courting a female, he will follow her closely, biting at her pectoral disc. He then places one of his two claspers into her valve and the deed is done.

Size: Its length is up to 75cm.

Marine Life | Namibia

  • Namibia Marine Life: Blue Stingray
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