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Comprehensive Description

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[[ Pastinachus Rueppell ZBK ]]

Pastinachus ZBK is generally considered to be a monotypic genus with a widespread species, P. sephen ( Forsskal , 1775) , occurring across the Indo-Pacific from the Red Sea to Australia, including Melanesia, Micronesia, and the China Seas (Last & Compagno, 1999). Five nominal species are presumed to be junior synonyms: Taeniura atra Macleay, 1883 ZBK (Last and Stevens, 1994), Raia fluviatilis Hamilton, 1822 ZBK (Roberts, 1998), Trigon forskalii Rueppell , 1829 ZBK (Nishida and Nakaya, 1990), Dasybatus gruveli Chabanaud, 1923 ZBK (Last and Compagno, 1999), and Raia sancur Hamilton, 1822 ZBK (Talwar and Jhingran, 1991). Recent research on Indo-West Pacific dasyatids has shown that more than one species of Pastinachus ZBK exists in the region and some of these names may need to be resurrected. Most of these unidentified taxa are very similar morphologically to P. sephen . In this manuscript, a new species with an unusual, distinctive angular snout covered in rough denticles is described based on material collected from Malaysian Borneo and Indonesia.

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