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#36513 - 03/23/01 03:46 PM Rays - feeding & petting  
Joined: Nov 2000
Posts: 5,441
ScubaLdy Offline
ScubaLdy  Offline
Everyone talks about the Sharks -- don't forget the Rays.
In January I had a different experience that was wonderful. As soon as we entered the water there were at least a half dozen large stingrays around us mooching for food.
We had none but they were insistent. A couple of them actually made body contact by swimming from my feet up across my back. One liked rubbing its belly on my dive buddy's hair. All six of us had some kind of physical contact and none of us initiated it (being environmentalist we discourage feeding and touching wild things).
Their belly skin felt like velvet.

On my 1st trip to A/C in '98 our dive master "danced" with a Nurse Shark at the wreck. I have a couple of wonderful full-face pictures of her. We called her scarface as she had a big chunk taken out of her upper lip. As he stroked her belly she rolled over like a cat and seemed to go catatonic. He had me pet her and I was shocked at how soft and velvety her skin was. The sad part about this shark is that she has not been seen since hurricane Keith. Had she come to rely of food from divers?

I have very mixed feelings about the practice of feeding and petting. Of course it is wonderful to interact with the wildlife but look what we created in Yosemite with the bears.
How do you feel?


Take only pictures leave only bubbles
#36514 - 03/23/01 05:19 PM Re: Rays - feeding & petting  
Joined: Nov 2000
Posts: 555
munichchick Offline
munichchick  Offline
Wow, it sounds like you had a wonderful experience. We also just loved snorkeling with the bautiful Rays and Sharks. And also I got to pet a Shark. I think this kind of encounter raises awarness and makes people love these animals. I think this could save Sharks because they are not looked at just like killers but creatures you don't alwyas have to fear and maybe even love. I sure will never eat Shark again and appreciate the beauty of all sharks even so I am scared of certain types. And I "Love" the Rays!!!

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