Category Archives: Things To Do In The Cayman Islands

Do You Wonder If Southern Stingrays Are Dangerous?

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If you ever spend any time in the waters of the Atlantic Coast and sometimes even parts of the Caribbean or Gulf of Mexico, then you might wonder about the creatures that inhabit those waters and if they are dangerous. In particular, do you know about the southern stingray? Do you know if it is dangerous? The short answer is, not very. It can mildly wound you, but the damage is unlikely to be severe, permanent, or fatal.

 

The southern stingray is one of moderate size and is considered a whiptail stingray. Its native zone is the western side of the Atlantic Ocean. As compared to spotted eagle rays, this stingray prefers to spend its time usually in contact with the actual seafloor. It’s often buried in the soft sediment, so only its large eyes are uncovered. The mouth of the southern stingray is on the ventral side of the head, and it makes use of an electric sense ability in order to locate numerous fish and invertebrate prey. It does seem to prefer crabs, shrimps, and crustaceans of various species.

The southern stingray gets oxygen from water through the use of gills, like all fish. However, given its habitual burying of the mouth in sediment means that water has an obstacle in passing into its gill cavity from the mouth. As an alternative, southern stingrays have specialized openings on the top of the head known as spiracles. It uses these to pump water in from behind the eyes, and you can easily notice these in live specimens and many photographs.

Southern stingrays have a natural defense mechanism from birth, which is a sharp and serrated barb that’s attached at their tail’s base. They use this against anything they consider a predator. If a human steps on them, which is often the only way people make physical contact with southern stingrays that proves dangerous, then the barb might lash out and contact the person’s flesh. Feet, ankle, and lower leg wounds are the most common, and sometimes quite nasty. A common question is “has anyone every been stung at Stingray City?”. The answer is yes but it’s unlikely to happen to you.

However, timely medical care can prevent long-term complications. In most all other circumstances, southern stingrays aren’t that dangerous, since the ocean floor is not someplace many people go. If you have a chance to swim with or even touch stingrays, such as a cruise ship excursion or coastal adventure, then you’re probably going to have a good time without any worry.

Things to Do When Visiting Grand Cayman

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As a popular island tourist destination, Grand Cayman offers many different types of attractions to its visitors. Considering that nearly 2 million people visit Grand Cayman every year, it stands to reason there would be lots to do. Whether you want to be outdoors or prefer shopping and nightlife, you’ll find it in Grand Cayman.

7 mile beach

seven mile beach grand cayman

The beaches in Grand Cayman are world-renowned. Many of the hotels have direct beach access that is reserved for those staying at the hotel, which is a bonus if you are planning on spending a few days there. The water is blue and clear, allowing for a once in a lifetime swimming experience.

For those who are a little more adventurous, Grand Cayman also offers snorkeling and SCUBA diving opportunities. There are even spear fishing and deep-sea fishing excursions which start on the island. There are many places to dive and fish along seven mile beach. Whether you want to look at the exotic fish or take some back with you for dinner, you’ll find it in Grand Cayman.

 

Those who go out snorkeling and diving will not be disappointed. The vibrant coral reefs located around the islands are home to thousands of kinds of fish and other aquatic life. You will not find a comparable experience anywhere else in the world.

If you leave Grand Cayman for a quick visit to Little Cayman, you can view many different kinds of exotic wildlife. There are even some species of endangered iguanas living there. For those who have never been to the Caribbean before, the variety of wildlife will astound you.

Cayman Parrott

For those who prefer shopping and dining out, you can’t miss Camana Bay. There are many different places there for buying souvenirs to take home. You can find both fine dining and local cuisine. There is even nightlife for those who want to get out for drinking and dancing on their vacation.

If you want something more educational, you can visit the Cayman Islands National Museum located in George Town. This museum showcases the history of the islands and the people who live there. Also available for viewing are the ruins of Fort George. Fort George was a British stronghold, built while the Cayman Islands were a British colony.

You will never regret or forget a trip to Grand Cayman. No matter what your interests are, a trip to the island will be rewarding and enjoyable. Whether you swim, fish, shop, or learn, you will leave satisfied.