Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Stingray City

I am re-posting this today, even though I originally posted the video on Friday, April 10th. I wanted to elaborate and include pictures along with the video, but I was half asleep when the lone video went live, that I didn't trust myself to even type out a longer description for the post. So here goes...

Stingrays have received such a bad rap that is so undeserving of these creatures. We were at Stingray City in Grand Cayman a week ago and it is by far the neatest thing one can indulge in here on the island. Out in the wild, on a shallow sand bar situated right smack in the middle of the ocean is Stingray City. I cannot tell you how surreal this experience is/was. Imagine a shallow 'sandbar' in the middle of the ocean, where the water is really only waist deep, and what you have is many stingrays converging to be fed by the many tour boats that dock in close proximity. These stingrays have been coming around for years and are quite used to the human presence lurking in their territory.

They are fed squid by the tour operators and by visitors alike, which they suction out of your hand. You are cautioned not to wipe your hands to any part of your body, because the squid scent will attract them to that particular body part, and suctioning will begin. Some do this anyway and end up with hickeys on their arms. I didn't feed the stingrays but I certainly kissed one and got a back massage too! I can tell you that they are very slimy creatures.

What was sublime was feeling the stingrays brushing up against your legs as they glide through the water, much like a cat brushes up against you. Check out the last pic in the group above. It is for this reason that you are advised to slide your feet through the sand as you walk around and not swim or lift your feet underwater. Can't have them rays getting the wrong idea, right? And lastly I leave you with what a stingray looks like from the underneath. Looking at that smiley happy face, how can anyone resist? So, come on in, stay a while, you'll be hooked.

STING RAY VIDEOS: The first video is NOT TO BE MISSED. Check out what the tour guide does with the 'stinger'. Of course he's used to them. He's pretty funny and dare I say he's got a lot of moxie. ENJOY!!!



Iona said...


MarkD60 said...

Great pics and videos! I like the way stingray feels! Smooooooth!