Dwarf or Mangrove Whipray (Himantura walga)
Sungei Buloh Wetland Reserve, 17th March 2016

This photo of a Stingray on a railing was shared by Noeleen Tan.

This is possibly the Dwarf or Mangrove Whipray, a species that is commonly found in inshore waters, as well as mangroves and river estuaries, although there are other species of Stingray found in the region that might look superficially similar.

Find out how you can contribute to Monday Morgue too.

Photos: Erwin Dumaguit Facebook

Philippines: Man-sized Guitarfish in Leyte dies after its fin was cut off
By TJ Dimacali, 13th March 2017;

A 10-foot-long (3-meter-long) Guitarfish (Rhinobatos Rhynchobatus) sp., known locally as “arado”) washed ashore in Dulag, Leyte, last weekend and may have been a victim of poaching.

According to a report on GMA News TV’s Unang Balita, the fish’s dorsal fin had been torn off, eventually leading to its death despite residents’ best efforts to return it to the sea.

The IUCN lists several species of Guitarfish as endangered due to overfishing for their prized dorsal fins, which are sought-after to make soup and medicine.

It was not clear as of press time whether the Guitarfish in Leyte was a victim of poaching or if it somehow lost its fin in an accident.

Closely related to Rays and Sharks, Guitarfish are bottom feeders that prey mostly on clams, worms, and other small animals on the sea floor.

Source: GMA News Online

The common name “Guitarfish” often refers to species from the family Rhinobatidae (Rhinobatus sp.) and Glaucostegidae (Glaucostegus sp.). The members of the family Rhinidae (or Rhynchobatidae) are typically known as Wedgefishes (Rhynchobatus sp.). Several species of Wedgefishes are known from the tropical Indo-Pacific; based on the external morphology seen in the photos, this is likely to be a White-spotted Wedgefish (Rhynchobatus australiae).

A giant Shovelnose Ray (Rhynchobatus sp.) was found dead along the shores of Brgy. San Miguel, Dulag, Leyte last 9 March.

Source: Rochie Montano Adolfo Facebook, via Marine Wildlife Watch of the Philippines Facebook

This is a Wedgefish (Rhynchobatus sp.); several species are known from the Indo-Pacific. Based on the external morphology, this is likely to be a White-spotted Wedgefish (Rhynchobatus australiae). The missing dorsal fins might be an indication that it had been finned.

  1. Rare species: Residents crowd around a Whale Shark caught in a trawl in Selakau waters, Sambas regency, West Kalimantan, on Friday.
  2. Playground: Children sit on the back of a Whale Shark caught in a trawl in Selakau waters, Sambas regency, West Kalimantan, on Friday.

Indonesia: Whale shark dead after being caught up in trawl
By Severianus Endi, 26th February 2017;

A 6-meter Whale Shark (Rhincodon typus) weighing more than 1 ton got caught in the trawl of a fisherman in Selakau waters, Sambas regency, West Kalimantan, on Friday. Residents later cut the protected animal up and distributed the pieces.

Officers from Selakau Police and the Natural Resources Conservation Agency (BKSDA) questioned the fisherman, identified as Gustian, over the incident. He said the animal had accidentally become caught up in a trawl he had put out in waters around 20 kilometers off the shore. When he had discovered the shark in the net, Gustian claimed, it had already been dead.

Gustian, who had been out fishing with his son that day, said they had been unable to release the Whale Shark from the trawl, so he decided to pull it to the pier.

Gustian said he was not aware that Whale Sharks were a protected species. He said he did not know who had ordered the local residents to cut the Shark into pieces and take them home.

Pictures of the Whale Shark went viral on social media, showing local residents, including children, crowded around the carcass of the animal on Selakau Beach.

The World Wildlife Fund (WWF) Indonesia’s West Kalimantan program manager, Albert Tjiu, told The Jakarta Post on Sunday there had been no clear information on whether Selakau waters were the habitat of Whale Sharks. However, he said, a WWF researcher conducting a survey in the area had heard of a similar incident last year.

Source: Jakarta Post

A dead Thresher Shark was accidentally caught by a fisherman in Barangay Bakhawan at around 2:00 a.m., January 8, 2017.

It was brought to the police station and then handed over to the MENRO.

Source: Municipal Environment and Natural Resources – LGU-Daanbantayan Facebook

A Bigeye Thresher Shark (Alopias superciliosus) was accidentally caught by a fisherman in Barangay Bakhawan in Daanbantayan, Cebu yesterday.

Source: Marine Wildlife Watch of the Philippines Facebook

Photos of what appears to be a Great Hammerhead (Sphyrna mokarran), found washed up on Kenangan beach in Bongawan, Sabah.

Sources: Pantai Kenangan Bongawan Facebook and Pantai Kenangan Bongawan ( W. Pait Liur) Facebook

Photos: Pantai Kenangan Bongawan Facebook

Malaysia: Hammerhead Shark carcass gains instant fame in Sabah, and online
By Avila Geraldine, 14th January 2017;

A Hammerhead Shark (Sphyrna sp.) carcass washed up on Kenangan beach in Bongawan, about 70km from Kota Kinabalu, and caused a sensation among locals and netizens.

Photos of the shark went viral on Facebook, shortly after villagers made the discovery at about 6.30am today.

As news of the discovery spread, curious villagers flocked to the site to take photos of the unique-looking marine predator.

The Hammerhead Shark has been listed in the International Union for Conservation of Nature Red List of globally-endangered species.

Awang Harun Karim, 50, from Kampung Silat, was the first to spot the Shark as he was preparing to open his grocery store for business. His shop is just about 50 metres away from the beach.

“I thought it was a log, but I took a closer look and discovered that it was actually a Hammerhead Shark. I immediately called my son and we rushed to the beach, but it was already dead when we found it,” he said.

The Shark was estimated to be 1.8-metres long and weigh about 60 kilogrammes.

“This was the first time I had seen a Hammerhead Shark on the beach. Two years ago, a Dolphin was stranded here and was rescued by the relevant authority,” Awang added.

Source: New Straits Times

Based on the shape of the head and the size of the dorsal fin in proportion to the rest of the body, this is likely a Great Hammerhead (Sphyrna mokarran). It’s not mentioned whether the shark carcass was found with a rope already tied behind the head. Could it have been caught by a person previously, and then discarded?