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Thornback rays (Raja clavata) are often spotted by divers in the open waters, swimming or laying flat on the seabed around Western Europe and North Western Africa.

Their colours and patterns resemble the sandy, muddy or gravelled seabed so they’re perfectly camouflaged, making them less likely to be predated on, but also making them a very stealth predator so they can appear as if from nowhere to snap up their unsuspecting passing prey.

Rays are incredibly graceful gliding through the water in ‘fevers’ (a group of rays) using their huge wing-like fins to seemingly effortlessly swim with speed across long distances.

They’re called thornback because they literally lots of tiny thorns lined across their back!



What do they eat?

Crabs, shrimps and small fish



Water Type


Where are we?

Western Europe and North Western Africa Coasts

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