True facts about Rays

Manta

Rays are pretty damn cool and we get some of the best types of rays down in Playa Coco. Not only do we get the incredible manta ray but beautiful spotted eagle rays, golden rays, stingrays, bullseye rays and more. Honestly you should come down and check them out! So here are some facts for you on the awesome rays.

1- Electric rays are honestly ELECTRIC. My instructor Martin can verify this first hand. That little target on a bullseye rays back? Honestly don’t touch it. Electric rays can deliver a shock from 8 to 220 volts. In fact the ancient Greeks used to us electric rays as an anaesthetic to numb the pain of operations and childbirth. Pretty unpleasant. Imagine you’re already in a ton of pain and their solution is to shock you with electricity. Don’t try this at home, the modern equivalent would be sticking your hand in a plug socket to get your friend to perform surgery on you.

2- A popular technique ‘the stingray shuffle’ is not something that rays perform but apparently something we humans should perform on shores that are known to have stingray populations in shallower water. This involves you literally shuffling your feet in the water so you can warn rays that you’re approaching. Apparently the perfect accessory for this is polarised sunglasses to help you spot rays… Don’t worry if you’re concerned people might think you’re an absolute idiot when they spot you doing this, they’ll probably just assume you’re practicing the latest dance craze, and still looking like an idiot

3- Rays are in fact related to sharks as they are both made primarily of cartilage and not bone. Ironically their main predators are sharks and whales. Would we count this as a type of cannibalism or do you think that just doesn’t count in the animal world?

4-It’s camouflaged to avoid predators; rays are a master at hiding. They can bury themselves completely in sand so only their eyes are visible, some have a texture and color that blends magically into the ocean floor. This is also probably why you have to do the Harlem Shake, sorry *stingray shuffle* to avoid standing on them. They’re basically the same right?

5- There are many false facts about manta rays, that they are dangerous because they are related to the stingray (they have no stinger), or because they resemble a huge bat, they are evil. In fact they are the friendliest of rays despite their size. I particularly liked the myth that they ate humans. Definitely false people, they might be related to sharks (who rarely eat humans anyway) but they’re more of a gentle giant. So don’t be scared to get to get in the water, it’s safe I promise. Even from sharks

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