Western Numbfish, Narcinops lasti Carvalho & Séret 2002

Other Names: Last's Numbfish

Western Numbfish, Narcinops lasti. Source: CSIRO National Fish Collection. License: CC by Attribution


A uniform pale yellowish-brown numbfish, usually with a white margin on the disc, a pale underside, and almost translucent fins. 

This species was previously known as Narcine lasti.

Cite this page as:
Hicks, T. & Bray, D.J. 2018, Narcinops lasti in Fishes of Australia, accessed 16 May 2022, https://fishesofaustralia.net.au/home/species/3282

Western Numbfish, Narcinops lasti Carvalho & Séret 2002

More Info


The Western Numbfish occurs on the outer continental shelf and upper slope waters off northwest Australia from Green Head, Western Australia, to Melville Island, Northern Territory. Inhabits areas with sandy and muddy bottoms, usually at depths of 180-320 m.


Body depressed; disc shovel-shaped with a broadly rounded apex. Disc widest close to insertion of pectoral fin. Medium sized eyes. Mouth narrow, internasal flap trilobed. Surface of skin lacking denticles and thorns, smooth, often creased. Tail, gradually tapering, about 1.1 - 1.2 times precloacal length. First and second dorsal fins approximately equal in size, both raked backwards. Caudal fin rounded posteriorly. Pelvic fins long and narrow. Total vertebrae 112-119; precaudal vertebrae 71-76.


Maximum total length 37 cm.


Freshly caught specimens uniform yellowish to tan dorsally, with areas of slightly lighter intensity over pelvic fin margins, anterior region of pelvic fins, and at lateral tail base regions. Dorsal and caudal fins semi-transparent posteriorly. Ventrally specimens are a pale white to cream colour, devoid of more distinctive markings.


Males and females reach maturity at 26 cm TL or less. This species is lecithotrophic viviparous, and females gives birth to about 2 pups per litter; size at birth, approximately 8 cm TL.

Similar Species


The species is named lasti "in honour of friend and colleague Dr. Peter R. Last, in recognition of his studies on the taxonomy and distribution of Australian elasmobranchs".

Species Citation

Narcine lasti Carvalho & Séret 2002, Rec. W. A. Mus. 20 (4): 396, Figs 1-6. Type locality: North of Cape Lambert, WA.


Hicks, T. & Bray, D.J. 2018


Australian Faunal Directory

Western Numbfish, Narcinops lasti Carvalho & Séret 2002


Carvalho, M.R. de. 1999. A systematic revision of the electric ray genus Narcine Henle, 1834 (Chondrichthyes: Torpediniformes: Narcinidae), and the higher-level relationships of the orders of elasmobranch fishes (Chondrichthyes). PhD thesis, The City University of New York. 735 pp. (as Narcine sp. nov. B)

Carvalho, M.R. de 2008. New species of numbfishes from Australia, with a key to Australian electric rays of the genus Narcine Henle, 1834 (Chondrichthyes: Torpediniformes: Narcinidae). pp. 241-260 in Last, P.R., White, W.T. & Pogonoski, J.J. (eds). Descriptions of new Australian chondrichthyans. CSIRO Marine and Atmospheric Research Paper No. 022: 1-358 (as Narcine lastiRef available online, open access

Carvalho, M.R. de, Compagno, L.J.V. & Last, P.R. 1999. Order Torpedinifomes: Families Narkidae, Hypnidae, Torpedinidae. pp. 1433-1451 in Carpenter, K.E. & Niem, V.H. (eds) The Living Marine Resources of the Western Central Pacific. FAO Species Identification Guide for Fisheries Purposes. Rome : FAO Vol. 3 pp. 1397-2068. (as Narcine sp. B)

Carvalho, M.R. de & Last, P.R. 2016. Family Narcinidae pp. 137-169. In: Last, P.R., White, W.T., de Carvalho, M.R., Séret, B., Stehmann, M.F.W. & & Naylor, G.J.P. (eds) Rays of the World. Melbourne: CSIRO Publishing, 800 pp.

Carvalho, M.R. de, McCord, M. & Stevens, J.D. 2015. Narcine lasti. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2015: e.T161700A68634807. http://dx.doi.org/10.2305/IUCN.UK.2015-4.RLTS.T161700A68634807.en. Downloaded on 23 January 2018.

Carvalho, M.R. de & Séret, B. 2002. Narcine lasti, a new species of numbfish from western Australia and Indonesia (Chondrichthyes: Torpediniformes: Narcinidae). Records of the Western Australian Museum 20: 393-408 See ref. online, open access

Gloerfelt-Tarp, T. & Kailola, P.J. 1984. Trawled Fishes of Southern Indonesia and Northwest Australia. Jakarta : Dir. Gen. Fish. (Indonesia), German Tech. Coop., Aust. Dev. Ass. Bur. 406 pp. (as Narcine sp. 1)

Larson, H.K., Williams, R.S. & Hammer, M.P. 2013. An annotated checklist of the fishes of the Northern Territory, Australia. Zootaxa 3696(1): 1-293 (as Narcine lasti)

Last, P.R. & Stevens, J.D. 1994. Sharks and Rays of Australia. Canberra : CSIRO Australia 513 pp. 84 pls. (as Narcine sp. B)

Last, P.R. & Stevens, J.D. 2009. Sharks and Rays of Australia. Collingwood : CSIRO Publishing Australia 2, 550 pp. (as Narcine lasti)

Sainsbury, K.J., Kailola, P.J. & Leyland, G.G. 1984. Continental Shelf Fishes of Northern and North-Western Australia. Canberra : Fisheries Information Service 375 pp. figs & pls. (as Narcine sp.)

Weigmann, S. 2016. Annotated checklist of the living sharks, batoids and chimaeras (Chondrichthyes) of the world, with a focus on biogeographical diversity. Journal of Fish Biology 88(3): 837-1037. (as Narcine lasti https://doi.org/10.1111/jfb.12874  Abstract

Quick Facts

CAAB Code:37028004

Conservation:IUCN Least Concern

Danger:Electric ray

Depth:180-320 m

Habitat:Sandy & muddy areas

Max Size:37 cm TL


Species Image Gallery

Species Maps

CAAB distribution map