DoE watching out for the stingrays

| 28/03/2020 | 23 Comments
Cayman News Service
Southern stingray (Photo courtesy of DoE)

(CNS): Following concerns in the community about Stingray City, the Department of Environment has said that its marine conservation officers are making sure the star attractions there are doing OK and getting the food they need. With no tourists going to the Sand Bar to feed them, the DoE said that the rays will revert back to foraging for food themselves. Nevertheless, the department is keeping a close eye on these important marine creatures.

In a social media post, the department thanked everyone who called in asking about the stingrays and reassured the community that officers were checking on them regularly.

“We have seen in other events, such as after Hurricane Ivan, when boats were not able to get out to Stingray City, that the stingrays switch back to their normal behaviour of foraging for food for themselves,” the marine experts at the DoE said. “Also, during previous research we have seen evidence that, despite the daily feedings, the stingrays still forage for themselves, so the loss of daily tours is something they can survive for a period of time,” they added.


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Category: Marine Environment, Science & Nature

Comments (23)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    We should feed anyone standing too closely or breaking curfew to the rays.

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  2. Anonymous says:

    The rays after Ivan were like piranha when anyone got in the water. If you weren’t actively looking and defensive, you became the squid. Just like the Bermuda Chub and Sgt Majors at Cemetery Reef raised on aerosol cheese whizz. Public warning signs should be staked by DOE. These are wild animals, long-conditioned to associate humans with easy energy fuel, and it becomes no joke once the blood is in the water yards from respite.

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  3. Anonymous says:

    Good. We will need them for food soon enough

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  4. Anonymous says:

    The rays will be fine guys! They are wild animals at the end of the day. Remember no one was out feeding them for weeks after hurricane Ivan and they were fine! Wildlife when left to its own devices can be very durable! 🙂

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  5. Anonymous says:

    Seriously? LMAO….here we are in the heart of a pandemic and the concern is “to make sure the stingrays are fed because there are no tourists going to the Sand bar to feed them”!? Wildlife can forage for food themselves. I honestly think we have more important matters to worry about!

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    • Anonymous says:

      You see where the priority lies right….sting rays of humans

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    • Anonymous says:

      I have nothing against Stingrays at the Sand bar but I have to agree with 6:05pm & 4:38pm. To even publicly say to make this a priority just blows my mind.

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      • Anonymous says:

        As each individual stingray is worth more than 500k to our local economy a year it’s not just for environmental reasons that people are concerned about there well being. When we are up and running again the stingray sandbar is one of the biggest contributors to our local economy and will help stabilise our economy once again. The government are not putting the rays before people. At the same time people have a reason to be concerned about there well being. Thankfully they are very hardy creatures and will be fine without our help.

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  6. Anonymous says:

    Oh Goody!

    Will the feed the humans that lost their jobs when this is all said and done with?

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    • Anonymous says:

      Oh goody, who will feed the people who never get jobs back because the stingrays gave up waiting, and left?

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  7. Anonymous says:

    Short sighted. Will the wildlife they prey on not be over-foraged? What if this lasts for many months?

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    • Anonymous says:

      They are now pets you know. They can fend for themselves. If they have not been foraging then the “prey” may be overpopulated.

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      • Anonymous says:

        They have been fed by humans for more than 50 years at that location. Their population density is higher than would naturally occur. Their natural prey has been significantly depleted by overfishing, habitat destruction, and pollution. You willing to bet an important aspect of our tourist industry on them being “just fine” even if it takes more than a year before the next tourist heads on out with some squid? We should remember that tomorrow will come, and although we have more immediate stresses, some eye should be kept on the future. Why not pay a small operator to head out and feed them each morning? It is better than paying everyone to stay at home.

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        • Anonymous says:

          10:52 why dont we leave the thinking to the scientists.. their natural food source isn’t depleted. They are very adaptable and have a varied diet which is good for their survival. They eat worms, crustaceans and small fish (to name a few) that often hide in the sand. Please do quote to me the scientific paper that says that their natural food source is depleted. They will be fine. They are adaptable wild animals. As there population has exploded in the last 50 years there is also no evidence that habitat destruction is affecting their numbers currently.

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          • Anonymous says:

            The shrimp, lobsters, young conch etc. that they naturally feed on have significantly depleted.

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            • Anonymous says:

              3:18 yes conch and lobster have depleted but stingrays do not rely on them solely as a food source. Also where did you get shrimps from? How do you know they are depleted? People on this island dont eat cleaner shrimp last time I checked.. Also the rays feed allot on annelid and polychaete worms which again there is no evidence of significant changes in their population. Do me a favour and read the paper by D Gilliam (Diet and feeding habits of the Souther Stingray) which covers a list of species that the rays eats. You will see that they have allot of options and wont starve anytime soon.

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