White Skate

Fact File:

Common Name(s):
White Skate, Bottle-Nosed Skate/Ray

Scientific Name:
Raja alba

Usual Size:
up to 100lb

UK Record Weights from rod/line:

Vacant(qualifying weight= 15lb)


MAFF Minimum Size: Shore: Boat:

Long pointed snout (more so in adults) the outer leading edge of the wing is square cut. The dorsal surface, except for the middle of the wings, is covered with small prickles. the median rows of spines on the tail have weakly ridged bases, can be worn flat on larger specimens. Colour: back, grey with indistinct whitish spots, young are normally reddish brown. Underside, adults white with greyish (black on young) band to the rear of the disc.


found in the 40m - 200m depth range over most types of bottom.


Is at it's northern Limit and scarce in the English Channel, but is more common, although still uncommon off the south west coast of England and South coast of Ireland.

Additional Notes:

It's often caught on the same grounds as the Common skate (Raja batis) and it is not unknown for it to be wrongly identified as a Common skate. This possibly explains why the rod caught record is only 76lb when the fish is quite capable of reaching double that.

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