Smooth Butterfly Ray

The Smooth Butterfly Ray is a broad, diamond-shaped ray with a very short tail.

The top is gray, brown or light green, dotted with paler and darker spots. The belly is white.

The tail has 3 to 4 dark crossbars.

This species has some ability to adapt its shade to that of the bottom.

Smooth Butterfly Ray Illustration by Duane Raver, Jr.
Season Open Year-Round
Size Limit No Size Limit
Daily Limit / Person No Limit
Delaware Range Atlantic Ocean, Delaware Bay and Inland Bays
Abundance in Delaware Waters Common
General Habitat and Food Preferences The Smooth Butterfly Ray prefers coastal waters and is usually found on soft bottoms. This species is also known to enter brackish estuaries.

They feed on fishes, crabs, shrimps, and squids.
Did You Know? The Smooth Butterfly Ray is not dangerous, as it does not possess spines. Be careful not to confuse the Smooth Butterfly Ray with the spinytail butterfly ray which does have a spine at the base of its tail.
Common Lures and Baits Often despised by fisherman, Smooth Butterfly Rays are usually caught accidentally by anglers fishing for other species.

It will readily take baits such as squid strips, pieces of peeler crabs, and clams.
Typical Sizes Caught Smooth Butterfly Rays can have wingspans as wide as 48 inches.
Citation Minimum Length and Weight Smooth Butterfly Rays are not currently eligible for a Delaware Sport Fishing Tournament or Live Release award.
Delaware State Record Smooth Butterfly Rays are not currently eligible for an individual Delaware record.