Stingrays

by Yeongjin Kwon

the Habitat of a Stingray

Stingrays are common in coastal tropical waters and subtropical marine waters. some species of stingrays that live these areas are Dasyatis Thetidis stingrays (a type of whiptail stingray) and Plesiobatis Daviesi stingrays (a type of deep water stingray). Dasyatis Thetidis stingrays live in more shallow waters while Plesiobatis Daviesi stingrays live in the ocean.


Other species such as river stingrays and some whiptail stingrays live in the river. They live here because they are restricted to freshwater. This means that they can't live in saltwater areas such as the ocean.


No matter where stingrays live, they are all bottom dwellers. This is because most of their food is located in the sand. This is also good for them because they can easily hide from predators in the sand.

how stingrays reproduce

The first step of stingray reproduction is courting the female. When a male courts a female, he follows her closely, biting at her pectoral disk. Then he puts one of his two claspers in her valve.


The next step of stingray reproduction is forming the stingray "litters." But a female may not give birth right away. Females can store sperm for a long time. Even two years! When a female decides to give birth, She releases the sperm. Embryos in the womb first absorb nutrients from a yolk sack, and when the sack is depleted, the embryos are provided with uterine "milk."


The last step to stingray reproduction is birth. Stingrays bear "litters" of 5 to 13. When a stingray is born, it can live on it's own right away.

Great White Sharks vs stingrays

Despite that people don't think stingrays and Great White Sharks aren't alike, they are in some ways.


Similarities

Stingrays and Great Whites both have skeletons made of cartilage, the material that shapes your ears. Another similarity is that both animals have babies that can take care of themselves when they are born.


Differences

Stingrays and Great Whites have differences too. One difference is that stingrays use flaps or wings to move, but Great White Sharks use fins. Another difference is that Great White Sharks lay eggs, but stingrays get pregnant.


As you see, people think stingrays and Great White Sharks are very different, but they have some similarities.

Ouch! You're stung. What do you do?

You get stung by a stingray. What do you do? These stings are really painful. Some even compare the sting to having a baby.


First, you look for a small "V" shaped cut on your ankle. Almost all stings occur at the top of your foot or ankle. Next, if the sting is bloody, use direct pressure on the wound with a gauze, cloth, or towel. Clean the wound like you would with a normal injury.


There are two ways to relieve a sting. The first method is to dunk your foot in the hottest water you can bear for 30-90 minutes. If an ozzy liquid comes out of the wound, this is a good sign. The venom is seeping out of the wound. The second method is to use painkillers. This can be used in conjunction with hot water.


Important:

If the patient looks unstable after being stung, notify a nearby lifeguard, call 911, or go straight to the hospital. If you notice swelling, redness, and tenderness around the injury, the stinger likely had bacteria on it and the patient will need medication.

you don't want to be stung. how do you avoid it?

No matter how painful a stingray sting is, they don't do it randomly. They do it for a reason.


One cause of a stingray sting is stepping on one. This is the most common way people get stung. One way to avoid this is to shuffle your feet in the sand instead of stepping. This is called the Stingray Shuffle. This warns the stingrays that you're in the area.


Another cause of being stung is if you fish one and you unhook it, it may sting you. This happens mostly to stingray fisherman in Malaysia and Singapore.


You are throwing a football at the beach and you spot a flounder. But is it really a flounder? People can also be stung by mistaking a stingray for something else, and therefore lead to stepping on it. So, will you use the stingray shuffle the next time you go to the beach?

How to Protect Yourself from Stingrays
Stingray City Grand Cayman 2014