StatisticsLength: Up to 90 cm
Weight: Up to 4.5kg
Average Lifespan: Can live for more than 20 years
When to seePresent all year round
AboutUndulate rays live on soft seabeds like sand and mud where they can bury themselves underneath the sediment. Instead of teeth, they have crushing plates which help them to feed on their diet of crustaceans.
Although it is commonly called the undulate ray, it is actually a species of skate (sometimes known as the undulate skate). Skates and rays are closely related and look similar, but you can spot the difference by looking at the tail. Skates have a short tail with small fins and no stinging capabilities, whereas rays have a long whip-like tail.
How to identifyThe undulate ray is easily recognisable thanks to the dark wavy pattern on its back. Small spines run down the centre of the animal and along the whole tail.
In our area
Undulate rays are rarely seen around Northern Ireland due to the lack of recorded landings - the lack of data makes it difficult to pinpoint any Undulate ray populations. This species is more commonly seen towards the south of Ireland, centred mainly on Tralee Bay with more records southwards to Mizen Head and northward to the Aran Islands. 99% of all Undulate rays tagged in Ireland were from Tralee Bay!