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What is the difference between a skate and a sting ray ?

Wildlife Expert - Ken Burton

Skates and rays (the proper term for stingrays) represent different orders of elasmobranch fishes. Skates (Order Rajiformes) have two-lobed pelvic fins and stocky tails and the males have rows of enlarged scales near the eyes and wingtips; rays (Order Myliobatiformes) have one-lobed pelvic fins and slender tails and the males lack the enlarged scales. Additionally, most rays have a stinging tail spine (no skates do) and most skates have dorsal fins at the tail tip and enlarged scales along the midline of the back and tail (most rays lack these features).

Related to this Question
species:

Big Skate
Raja binoculata


Southern Stingray
Dasyatis americana

   
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