Blog: Biodiversity #28 – Numb Ray (Hypnos monopterygius)

Numb Ray (Hypnos monopterygium)

The Numb Ray – so called because it can give you a 200V electric shock – which will make your arm go numb! Also called a coffin ray, though not sure why, it is not really coffin shaped. Not to be confused with Numbfish which look more like rays, and less like discarded sacks! Numbfish have a much wider distribution, whereas the Numb Ray species is endemic to Australia.

Numb Ray (Hypnos monopterygium)

Numb Rays use their electrical discharge both for defence, and attack, and having expandable mouths can electrocute prey as large as a penguin and then swallow them whole.

Supposedly nocturnal, and will spend most of the day, semi-buried in sand. Not sure why this one was out in broad daylight – possibly he’d been disturbed by divers.

This one was at Looking Glass in Nelson Bay, but I’ve see one hanging around South West Rocks too.

(Reminds me of Mr Potato Head in Toy Story 3 when he’s escaping from the kindergarten with his bits stuck in a tortilla).

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