Starry ray

Amblyraja radiata

The starry ray is a small ray species, usually between 40 and 70 cm long, but can reach up to 100 cm.


It is found all around Iceland and is in fact one of the most widely distributed fish in Icelandic waters. It is common at a depth range of 20 to 1000 m, even deeper. It is not really found in large aggregations but rather as individuals. The starry ray is by far the most abundant cartilaginous fish in Icelandic waters and really the only one that can be considered common all over the continental shelf.

It is found in European waters from the White Sea in the waters around the British islands in the south. It is also around the Faroe Islands, in southern Greenlandic waters and from Baffin Island to northern Florida in North America.


The starry ray feeds on a variety of prey; fishes such as sandeels, capelin and small codfishes are commonly taken, but also benthic crustaceans and other invertebrates. Not much is known about its spawning, but it is considered to be spread over the entire year, with maximum in the summer. It is difficult to determine the age of cartilaginous fishes, but the starry ray is thought to be able to reach at least 20 years of age.


The starry ray has always been fished as bycatch in a variety of fishing gear around Iceland and often been discarded. 


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