A pair of Southern Stingray pups were added late last month to the Stingray Bay touch tank. These juveniles were born in November to adults exhibited in the Secret Reef.
The pups were born in early November. As with all stingrays, they were live-born and were found freely swimming through the tank. Volunteer divers remove newly born rays from the exhibit and relocate them to the Quarantine Room, where they receive special care as they grow.
Currently, all 11 Southern Stingrays in our touch tank were born to the adults in the Secret Reef, and Aquarists have also shared about a dozen others to different institutions
Having actively breeding animals is an excellent sign that they are thriving in their environment, Aquarist Kyle McPheeters says.
“Basically, when you have animals reproducing on exhibit, that signifies that they are comfortable, well-fed, and healthy enough to devote energy to something other than just surviving,” he says. “Animals in subpar conditions tend to not reproduce, so any time you have young born — or eggs, as is the case with our small sharks and larval fish — that’s indicative of healthy happy animals!”