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Freshwater stingray care: horrible and honest mistakes to learn from

Freshwater Stingray Care

Water quality is the foundation to successful Freshwater Stingray Care. Every ray keeper knows this, and we all strive to ensure the very best conditions for our prized pets.

We have recently been contacted by two different clients with horrific situations that have been honest mistakes, but the consequences have been catastrophic.

Both these stories are terrible, and we are deeply sorry for the people concerned.  The purpose of this post is to raise awareness for fellow ray keepers and to try and prevent such tragedy for other people.

Story 1

Before starting his 50% routine water change on his tank this ray keeper decided make life a bit easier and buy a standard garden length of hose to stop using buckets to carry water. Happy with his new purchase, he connected the new hose pipe to his water source and started filling his tank.

After a few minutes he noticed all his rays darting around the tank, up the glass and falling backwards toward the bottom. Only having added about 20% freshwater through this new hose. He desperately emptied more water and started filling with the buckets.

But it was too late.  Within 15 minutes four out of his six rays are all dead. Only two survived out of six healthy rays.

The only difference that he did this time around was use a brand-new hose pipe. So, we can only assume that the hose pipe contained a strong chemical of some description that has poisoned the water.

A very harsh lesson to learn from.  Please ensure that you buy any hose pipe from your local fish shop.  Alternatively, please make sure the hose has been thoroughly rinsed before use.

Freshwater Stingray Care

Story 2

Another gent called us with another story about collecting some rays from another hobbyist. Collecting a total of four new rays. Because he only had two poly boxes he bought two black plastic containers to transport the other two rays. The total journey time was only 20 mins back to his house.

Sadly, upon getting back to his two rays in the plastic containers they were both dead and the two in the poly box were alive.

Again, there are possible other factors like stress, ammonia in the tub, lack of oxygen etc, but it does make you think that possibly something in the box contaminated the water?

We hope this post has been helpful.

For more information on Freshwater Stingray Care please read our Freshwater Stingray Guide

 

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Festival of Fishkeeping 2017

freshwater stingrays at festival of fishkeeping

The Festival of Fishkeeping will see Freshwater Stingrays exhibiting again this year on the weekend of 7-8 October.

First of all, we’re really looking forward to another fantastic opportunity to meet up with so many of our customers. So we hope you’ll stop by and say hello to the team.  This year, we’ll have another amazing display of freshwater stingrays and oddballs for sale.  All available at show prices. We’ll be at the show both days to chat and offer advice no matter what your area of interest or level of proficiency is.  We have a complete obsession with freshwater stingrays, Asian Arowanas and all their tank mates. And with more than 7 years’ experience breeding stingrays and fish we hope you find our advice and tips helpful.

 

The FBAS Festival of Fishkeeping

This will be the 31st Festival of Fishkeeping hosted by The Federation of British Aquatic Societies (FBAS). It’s the UK’s biggest display of rare breed, tropical fish and reptiles and brings together the very best quality of fish and reptiles from breeders and hobbyists from around the country.  The event will take place at Hounslow Urban Farm in Feltham.  Since the show is all undercover, you can rather stay nice and dry if it does decide to rain.

 

Hounslow Urban Farm

Your entry to the Festival of Fishkeeping will also give you access to the farm itself. Hounslow Urban Farm is a great venue for the show. Its facilities will make a brilliant day out with the kids if you are bringing the family along too. As one of the UK’s largest community farms there’s loads to keep them entertained.  There are animal encounters and bird of prey displays. A bouncy castle and play zones.  Face painting and crafts.  Hopefully enough to keep them occupied while you check out the fish.

You can get all the information you need from their website or just set your satnav to Faggs Road, Feltham, Middlesex TW14 0LZ

 

Federation of British Aquatic Societies (FBAS) Festival of Fishkeeping

Founded in 1938, the Federation of British Aquatic Societies (FBAS) is the largest fishkeeping-orientated organisation in the UK.  The FBAS provides backing for Societies’ Shows.  The most prestigious being the UK largest annual Festival of Fishkeeping.

The FBAS Show Rules and Show Standards are outstanding. Most noteworthy, the Federation officiate train and grade the judges. The Federation also ensure all the latest developments are taken into consideration for the continuing quality of the Show Rules at all levels of competitive showing.

 

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What do freshwater stingrays eat?

What do freshwater stingrays eat

What do freshwater stingrays eat?

So what exactly do what do freshwater stingrays eat? Making sure your fish have a healthy and varied food diet to eat can help make sure they will thrive and have a long life span.

Stingrays and Arowanas have a high metabolic rate.  So you will find that your stingrays in particular, are continuously on the lookout for food.

Many stingray enthusiasts use sinking pellet food for carnivorous fish with good results. We have tried and tested various diets over the years.  Our stingrays love a diet which includes mussels, baby squid, prawns and white bait.  We can’t help but give them what they want.

If you are pellet feeding your rays maybe try and supplement their diet with frozen fish too.  We think you rays will love you for it.

If you would like to find out more about frozen food for your stingrays we would be happy to share our experiences with you – just let us know.

 

 

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Freshwater stingray care sheet

Freshwater Stingray Care Sheet

Freshwater stingray care sheet

Congratulations on becoming a privileged owner of these incredible creatures.  We hope this freshwater stingray care sheet will help your new stingray have an easy transition to its new home. Taking the time to get find out more about your new fishy friend will help ensure that it will thrive in your aquarium.

Please take the time to read through these care sheets and blog posts before introducing your new stingray to your aquarium.

Motoro Marble P01 Stingray Care Sheet

Leopoldi P13 Stingray Care Sheet

If you have any questions that you can’t find answers to here.  Please let us know because we are happy to help.  We value your questions and love to find new ideas for our future blog posts to help others.

Freshwater stingray care sheet | Stingray Origins

This species of Freshwater Stingray originates from the rivers of Brazil, South America; Rio Xingu, Rio Fresco, Rio Curua and Rio Iriri. The fish we supply are tank bred. They have not been taken from the wild so they are accustom to aquarium conditions and do not come with the inherent problems that some wild caught rays may come with; such as trouble feeding, worms, parasites and very low tolerance to
aquarium conditions.

Freshwater stingray care sheet | Acclimatisation

The acclimatisation process is critical to allow your fish to become used to your tank conditions, water parameters and temperature
after its journey. Failure to do this process may result in severe stress and fatality of your ray. We do not run R.O water systems with any of our rays which means that our rays should be easy to condition to your aquariums and are generally more hardy than rays which have been brought up in R.O systems.

We recommend following our 12 steps to introduce your new stingray to your aquarium. This advice offered in this freshwater stingray care sheet is offered with good intent, and is based on a system that works for us with the hundreds of rays that we have introduced to our
aquariums.

12 steps to introduce your stingray to an aquarium

Please download our freshwater stingray care sheet for reference during the acclimatisation process

  1. Your ray will be packed in a plastic bag inside a poly box. Once you receive your ray or arrive home don’t delay.
  2. There are a few methods that people adopt but we will offer you advice on our preferred method which is to slowly empty the bag with the ray and its water into the poly box (make sure it’s clean).
  3. Once the ray is safely in the poly box in its water that it has arrived in you can start a trickle of water into he box from your aquarium. A tip; use a 6mm airline tube and start a syphon. The water will very slowly start to fill up the box.
  4. Using a 6mm airline tube the water will be slow enough that the ray should easily be able to become used to your tanks water parameters and conditions.

    Freshwater Stingray Care Sheet

  5. When the box becomes full empty the water out of the box until a quarter empty and repeat process. As an approximate guideline you want to complete at least 2-3 complete fill and empties of the poly box approx. 45 mins to 1 hour.
  6. Watch your ray. Its breathing should be relaxed and slow. If it seems like the ray is gasping continue to acclimatise and check your water parameters.
  7. Now your ray is ready to enter into your tank.
  8. Scoop the ray up in a plastic container and lower it into the tank – this is the least stressful way for the ray to enter your tank.
  9. If this is not possible then using a net slowly allow it to swim into the net.  Try to have its head in the belly of the net and the tail out the end so that the chance of the barb becoming tangled is limited.
  10. Turn the light off so your ray can become accustomed to its new home.
  11. Your ray will have been starved for its trip, therefore it will be hungry. After about 30 mins try it with a small amount of food.
  12. If your ray is entering a tank with other tank mates we advise that you keep a watch to ensure the ray is not being bullied or the other way round too.

Freshwater stingray care sheet | Feeding and Diet

All our rays are fed a varied diet to help healthy growth. They have a high metabolism and therefore require good food to allow it to develop well. Rays will except sinking pellet food, but in our experience you will get the best out of your ray feeding more nutritious food. Here are our recommendations:

Frequency  – Pups should eat at least twice a day, while adults at least once a day

Pup Food – Frozen blood worm, chopped, white bait, chopped mussel, chopped prawn

Adult Food – Mussels, prawn, white bait

Especially relevant, is that we recommend frozen blood worm rather than fresh as it reduces any chance of bacteria in the food. Avoid live food if possible.  Rays can struggle to eat other food after live food is on the menu.

Freshwater stingray care sheet | Keeping Healthy

First of all, watch and study your ray and learn its habits. Rays are very good at telling you if there is something wrong. They will quickly go off their food, become less active and may start to breath heavily. These can be signs of something wrong with the conditions. If you are concerned contact us and we will be happy to try and offer advice.

We very much hope that this freshwater stingray care sheet has been helpful for you and as a result, your ray is now safely swimming around your aquarium.


Would you like to learn more about your new fishy friend?  You might also like to read some of these blogs we have written for you

12 simple steps to get your new stingray into your aquarium

9 Fascinating Facts about the Freshwater Stingray

How easy is it to keep stingrays?

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Freshwater stingray tank mates

Freshwater stingray tank mates

Freshwater stingray tank mates

Freshwater Stingrays are generally not aggressive fish.  There are many freshwater stingray tank mates which generally can live side by side with your rays. However, it is important to note that stingrays are still predatory fish and anything too small may end up inside your ray. As rays spend most of their lives patrolling the bottom mid-water and top-level swimming fish make excellent tank mates and give your aquarium great contrast.

So here are our top tank mates for your freshwater friend


1.Asian Arowana

The Asian Arowana are great companions for your freshwater stingrays.  They are top dwelling fish so they like to swim at the top of the tank, leaving the rays in peace at the bottom.  We often have stock of Asian Arowana and import several times a year.  Contact us if you have your heart set on these magnificent fish

arowana
Asian Arowana


2. Tinfoil barbs

The tinfoil barb is an active, peaceful species. It spends most of its time in the mid-level and bottom of the water. A greedy eater, it will eat almost anything provided to it. Yes, even stingray waste which we thought was a great idea.  However, the rule what goes in must come out does apply.

Tinfoil_barbs_01
Tin Foil Barbs


3. Gars

Gars have swim bladders that can function as lungs and most gars surface every so often to take a gulp of air.  They are often called living fossils as they have changed very little over millions of years.  They are pretty slow swimmers, unless they are hunting.  Random fact for you to impress your fish keeping friends is that their eggs are highly toxic to humans.

1280px-Gar_shedd
Gars (or garpike)

 

We would love to hear what your favourite freshwater stingray tank mates

Comment below:

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Freshwater stingray history

freshwater stingray history

Freshwater stingray history

All stingrays both fresh and saltwater belong to the class Chondrichthyes. This includes all 850 species of sharks, rays, skates and chimaeras. Based on fossil remains it is known that this class of fish have been around since the Palaeozoic period (250 million years ago approx.), however it is believed that the adaption of the flattered (ray like) body only occurred in the Jurassic period some 100 million years ago. Freshwater stingray history is certainly an interesting topic for the fish keeper of today.

The development of the body shape and the loss of a swim bladder enabled these early rays to hide and lay practically invisible to a predator and to its pray. Rays have developed powerful jaws designed for crushing shells and molluscs which is a primary food source for these animals. Fossil remains prove that little has changed in the anatomy of stingrays over the last 50 million years.

Class

Chondrichthyes (Cartilaginous Fish)

Subclass

Elasmobranchii (Sharks, rays and skates)

Order

Rajiformes (rays and skates)

Family

Dasyatidae (stingrays)

Family

Potamotrygonidae (river rays)

 

 

Freshwater stingray history – How did Stingrays adapt to Freshwater?

There are many theories on how the south american stingray adapted to freshwater to create a new family Potamotrygonidae (river rays).  A longstanding hypothesis suggests that before the Andes mountains were created about 80 million years ago, marine rays from the Pacific lived in and around the coastal areas near the Amazon and became tolerant to brackish water. Over time the Amazon reversed its flow as the Andes were formed.  The reversal of the river meant that stingrays became trapped in freshwater.

Another proposal put forwarded based upon DNA sequencing suggests that stingrays evolved far more recently. The theory suggests that marine rays from the Caribbean infiltrated into rivers draining into the Atlantic Ocean. If this theory is correct, then it suggests that the adaptation of the freshwater stingray could have been as recent as 20 million years ago.

It is not possible to know which theory of freshwater evolution is correct.  However it is extremely likely that the did develop from marine rays. Ray fossils prove that freshwater and marine rays have changed little in the last 50 million years.

Freshwater stingray history – The adaptation to freshwater

Sharks and rays are inherently marine animals simply based on their physiology. Seawater is usually saltier than the blood of most fishes, but instead of actively pumping ions and other solutes out of their bodies like marine bony fishes, elasmobranchs simply match their internal osmotic concentrations to that of their external environment. They do this by maintaining concentrations of organic solutes (namely urea and an enzyme called trimethylamine oxide or TMAO) within their bodies. Although urea is toxic to fish, the TMAO counteracts the protein-de-stabilizing effects of urea. Excess monovalent ions that they ingest, namely sodium and chloride, are eliminated from the body via specialized rectal glands.

Amazonrivermap
The Amazon River

Since Amazonian rays live in freshwater, they have exactly the opposite problem of their marine cousins: instead of losing water to their external environment, they have to worry about gaining it, since their internal osmotic concentrations are higher than that of the water in which they live. One result of this situation is that freshwater stingrays no longer have any need for rectal glands, and these structures are now vestigial (greatly reduced in size and no longer capable of secreting salt).

They have also lost the ability to retain urea, allowing them to sever their ties with the ocean and evolve into exclusively freshwater organisms.

Freshwater stingray history – Taxonomy

The family of Potamotrygonidae belonging to the genus Potamtrygon consist of about 20 species of rays. In 1986 Ricardo Rosa re-assessed the taxonomy of freshwater stingrays.  This can be tricky. Most rays are highly polymorphic. This means that variations is patterns, physical structure and tail length are highly common.

The word Morph describes different looking specimens in the same species. In only a few cases the ray has a constant shape and pattern. A good example of a non-polymorphic species is the Tiger Ray which has a consistent colour, pattern and shape between specimens. On the other hand a great example of a highly polymorphic species is the Motoro stingray. This ray has many pattern variants and shapes within its species.

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9 Fascinating Facts about the Freshwater Stingray

freshwater stingrays facts

Freshwater stingrays facts

So to kick off – first the biology lesson.  Did you know that stingrays are members of the Elasmobranch class?  Well of course you did right? Just in case you didn’t..its is a group the includes both freshwater and marine stingrays, sharks and sawfish.  So now you know that, here are my 9 fascinating freshwater stingrays facts to help you understand your fishy friend a little more and marvel at how unique they are

denticles
Dermal denticles as viewed through an electron microscope

Freshwater Stingrays Facts # 1

Stingrays and their cousins the shark are covered with placoid scales Also called dermal denticles.  

Its the denticles that give the texture of smooth sandpaper.  

Placoid scales can’t actually grow in size, instead more scales are added as the fish increases in size.

 

Freshwater Stingrays Facts # 2

The barb is actually a modified denticle. The stingray has the ability to grow and shed its barb usually about twice a year. And its not uncommon for a ray to be seen with two barbs whilst the new one is growing. Usually the larger barb that is closer to the tail tip is the one that will fall off (Don’t forget  barbs can be found in your aquarium so please take care when removing them as they can still sting you even when they are no longer attached)

Freshwater Stingray Top Tip: If the barb is still black you can be sure that there is still a poisonous coating that you really don’t want to touch.

Freshwater Stingrays Facts #3

All Elasmobranchs shed their teeth continually thoroughout their life span.  Just take a look at the bottom of your tank if you don’t believe me. No, its not sand! Its teeth!

Freshwater Stingrays Facts # 4

Freshwater stingrays don’t have calcified bones instead their body is composed of cartilage – this enables the ray to maximise its movement. So it’s important to remember that great care should be taken when removing a ray from the water environment.

Freshwater Stingray Top Tip:  Moving rays should be done quickly with minimum stress to the fish.  The weight of the body can cause the cartilage to compress putting strain on the vital organs.

Freshwater Stingrays Facts # 5

Freshwater stingrays have adapted to living partially buried in the substrate. They rays have an accessory respiratory opening, the Spiracle. This is believed to be an adapted gill slit which has over time migrated to the dorsal side of the stingray. When the stingray is resting on the bottom and the under belly gills cannot allow water to pass through them then these spiricals open which allows the ray to breath whilst resting on the bottom.

Freshwater Stingrays Facts # 6

Stingrays have good eyesight which is a bonus for any ambush predator. Inside the eye there is a structure called the Operculum pupillare which controls the amount of light entering the eye. In dim light this will retract allowing greater light in and better vision at night.  So this is my favourite freshwater stingray fact.  Yes, they are watching you

Freshwater Stingrays Facts # 7

The digestive system of stingrays have evolved an unusual structure in the intestine. There are many layers or folds that have been added to the lining of the intestine. As food passes through the digestive tract it passes through this spiral valve. This explains why stingray waste has a ribbon like twist to it. This adaptation is also found in sharks and other primitive fish.

Freshwater Stingrays Facts # 8

The barb of the freshwater stingray is located midway along the tail of the ray. It is a defence weapon. The barb is only used a defence strategy and never used to hunt with. The ray is able to swipe its tail and reach its furthest point of its body in a very quick response. Want to know more about the venom and the spine read my other blog on the topic

Freshwater Stingrays Facts # 9

Potamotrygon is a genus of freshwater stingrays native to the rivers of South America. There are currently 27 recognized species in this genus.  So plenty of stingrays for us to put on our wish list

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How dangerous are stingrays?

How dangerous are stingrays?

How dangerous are stingrays?

It is a common opinion that Stingrays use their barb to kill their prey or to harm humans. You can hardly mention stingrays without the mention of Steve Irwin. But just how dangerous are stingrays? Mr Irwin’s death was only the third known stingray death in Australian waters, and wildlife experts agree “the normally passive creatures only sting in defence, striking with a bayonet-like barb when they feel threatened”

So stingrays really are peaceful animals and will actually try to avoid human interaction at all costs.  Stingray barbs are a defence. A protective weapon against other predators. Stingrays are the ‘pussycats of the seas’.  A name probably given due to their docile behaviour. That said, it is also reported that the natives of South America fear the stingray more than they do the piranha.

How dangerous are stingrays – captive vs wild

The majority of people stung by a stingray are unfortunate enough to have waded into the water and stepped on a ray.

Captive rays are generally docile and will tolerate the keepers hand being in the aquarium (such as cleaning).  Take extra care to make sure that the ray does not feel trapped or scared.

In either situation, if the stingray feels threatened it can lead to defensive behaviour which may result in a tail swipe.

How dangerous are stingrays – The Spine and Venom

The Stingray Spine is its main defensive weapon and it is therefore extremely rare for a fish to use it unprovoked. The barb is a modified denticle, (same as the rays skin). The location of the barb or spine is located about 2/3 along the tail or caudal appendage of the animal. The barb usually lies flush along the topside of the tail and points in the direction of the tail tip. In rare cases the barb has changed angle and points towards the head. This adaptation has no scientific explanation.

There is a wedge-shaped area of tissue located in close contact with the barb where the spine lays flat against the dorsal surface of the ray’s tail. It is covered in a cocktail of venom and mucus.

There is a lot of confusion referring to the correct terms fish keepers use when speaking about the spine/sting and barb. Here are the correct terms

The Sting:   Refers to the entire structure (the spine its sheath and venom glands)

The Spine:   Refers to the ridged surface of the sting made from dentin

The Barb:   Refers to the backward facing serrations along the lateral part of the spine

Stingrays are unable to raise and lower their sting however in response to a threat, but they can swipe their powerful tail to strike a predator.

How dangerous are stingrays – The Venom

All species of stingray have very similar venoms, yet some species are rather more potent than others. They all contain the same enzymes:  serotonin, 5-nucleotidase and phosphodiesterase. The last two enzymes are responsible for the necrosis and tissue breakdown seen in a stingray sting.

The serotonin is the enzyme which causes the excruciating pain in the area of the wound. Therefore, if left untreated the actions of these enzymes will continue to cause pain and tissue breakdown.

The stingray’s infamous tail spines have two components: the sharp inner barb used for piercing, and a thin sheath surrounding it that contains the venom. The barb pierces the venom sac along with the victim’s skin as the spine is deployed. As a result, the poisonous slime is introduced into the wound.

The barb is extremely sharp.  It can penetrate bone. Operating under the same principle as an arrowhead it slides into flesh fairly easily, but the serrated edges make it very difficult and painful to extract. The tail is very flexible and can bend pretty much any direction within a split second, inflicting serious damage.

How dangerous are stingrays – First Aid for Stings

The toxins or venom from the stingray’s spines are protein molecules.  You can “denature” proteins. To do this, the most effective treatment is to immerse the wound in as hot as water as the patient can stand.  Expect this to take a couple of hours.  You’ll know when the treatment has worked because it wont hurt when you take the wound out of the water.

How hot should the water be?  Don’t use boiling water.  That will just take your skin off. Take advice from the patient or trust your own instinct if you are the patient.  In our experience, the hotter the water, the less the sting hurts.  Continuously top up the hot water to ease the pain.  You/they will feel so much relief from keeping the wound in hot water.  Now, it’s just a matter of sitting with their hand in a bowl for a couple of hours.  Every so often, they might say – “its fine now”.  You’ll quickly figure out that the pain will return until all the proteins are denatured.

Please seek medical attention immediately if the wound itself is severe. Especially if you consider the barb’s serrated edges could cause more damage with its removal without medical advice. Most UK doctors might not have had to treat a stingray injury before, so please let them know that untreated necrosis can result in a build-up of decomposing dead tissue and cell debris at or near the site of the cell death. A classic example is gangrene.

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12 simple steps to get your new stingray into your aquarium

How to get your new stingray into your aquarium

How to get your new stingray into your aquarium

How to get your new stingray into your aquarium is a question we often get. We recommend following our 12 simple steps to introduce your new stingray into your aquarium.  This advice is offered with good intent and is based on a system that works for us with the hundreds of rays that we have introduced to our aquariums.

1.Your ray will typically be packed in a plastic bag inside a poly box. Once you receive your ray or arrive home don’t delay.

2.There are a few methods that people adopt but we will offer you advice on our preferred method which is to slowly empty the bag with the ray and its water into the poly box (make sure it’s clean).

3.Once the ray is safely in the poly box in its water that it has arrived in you can start a trickle of water into the box from your aquarium. A tip; use a 6mm airline tube and start a syphon. The water will very slowly start to fill up the box.

4.Using a 6mm airline tube the water will be slow enough that the ray should easily be able to become used to your tanks water parameters and conditions.

6mm tube

5.When the box becomes full, empty the water out of the box until a quarter empty and repeat process. As an approximate guideline you want to complete at least 2-3 complete fill and empties of the poly box over a 45 min to 1 hour period.

6.Watch your ray.  Its breathing should be relaxed and slow. If the ray is gasping continue to acclimatise and check your water parameters.

7.Now your ray is ready to enter into your tank.

8.If it is possible to scoop the ray up in a plastic container and lower it into the tank this is the least stressful way for the ray to enter your tank.

9.If this is not possible then using a net slowly allow it to swim into the net. If possible, try to have its head in the belly of the net and the tail out the end to help limit the chance of the barb becoming tangled.

10.Turn the light off and allow your ray to become accustomed to its new home.

11.Your ray will have been starved for its trip so it will be hungry. After about 30 mins try it with a small amount of food.

12.If your ray is entering a tank with other tank mates we advise that you keep a watch to ensure the ray is not being bullied or the other way round too.

 

 

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How easy is it to keep stingrays?

how to keep freshwater stingrays

How to keep freshwater stingrays?

One of the first questions we get from potential ray keepers is How to keep freshwater stingrays? Or How easy is it to keep stingrays? Despite popular belief freshwater stingrays can be easy to look after providing you have good water and filtration.

Yes, stingrays have a very low tolerance to ammonia, but as long as this is zero and  you have the right size aquarium you should be fine. Also make sure you use a water conditioner to remove chlorine.

Stingrays have a very low tolerance to ammonia.  As long as this is zero and you have the right size aquarium you should be fine

A lot also comes down to the stingray you choose. The cheapest freshwater stingray that some people try is a teacup ray.  They are capture from the wild in Asia which makes them very cheap.

Sadly, they have a very slim chance of surviving in tanks.  They struggle to adjust to tank life and feeding. Often they come with parasites and worms which can lead to their death unless treated. A lot of people get put off keeping stingrays because they buy a ray like this and it doesn’t survive.

We respond to messages daily to this effect trying to help people having problems with these types of stingray.

Which stingray to choose?

If you really want to know how to keep freshwater stingrays take the time to research which ray would be best for you. In terms of tank size, it depends on the breed of stingray and the amount you want to keep. Always remember males stay smaller too. For example one of our 5ft by 2ft aquariums would keep a ray up until about 1.5-2 years old then if it is a bigger breed you may need to upgrade. Staying with a smaller breed like a pearl you would be able to house an adult ray in this.

You could easily have a pair of something like pearls or hybrids in that sort of set up as long as the filtration is good.

Our stingray are all tank bred. They are used to aquarium conditions and are very happy. We have hybrid stingrays that start from £150-£200 and up.

In our experience, our most popular ray that people buy as a first time stingray is a black diamond X motoro hybrid. They look stunning and are pretty resilient too.

If you are an experienced fish keeper, and already know what you are looking for please visit our online shop to see our current stock of stingrays for sale.

Otherwise, if you need advice or help selecting your fish just let us know.  We are always happy to chat to you about what you are looking for.  So if you have any questions please contact us