A large ray which gets its name from Shagreen, processed shark or ray leather with embedded skin teeth which has been prized for centuries for its quality and has been used in luxury upholstering, on the handles of swords and as an abrasive sandpaper. Marketed as skate wings.
Like all skates and rays shagreen rays are slow growing and produce a small number of eggs each year so are vulnerable to over fishing. They are relatively rare in our waters and although stocks are poorly studied there landings are decreasing. They are caught as by catch in trawl and net fisheries usually in deep water.
Updated December 2020
This species is caught using many methods but all are scored the same by Cornwall Good Seafood Guide.Learn more
Cornwall Good Seafood Guide rates fish on sustainability using a scale of 1 to 5.
1, 2 and 3 are recommended, Fish to avoid are rated 5.
We use the system devised by the Marine Conservation Society (MCS) so our scores are comparable with the scores produced by MCS for the UK and fisheries from all around the world. For more information on scoring click here.
Skate and rays landing are managed through a mixed species Total allowable catch (quota). This is set by the EU and shared amongst member states. As it covers many species this is not ideal for the protection of each species. There is no specific management plan for demersal elasmobranchs and no management plan for this stock or any skate stock in the ICES area. Given the regional differences in skate assemblages and fisheries, ICES recommends that management measures for elasmobranchs be developed on a case-by-case basis.
Live oysters are mainly served raw. All you need is a knife, a bottle of good wine, and a little lemon or tobasco and away you go!