Sting Rays find new home on Treasure Coast

By Juan Carlos Fanjul - bio | email

STUART, FL (WFLX)-- The Florida Oceanographic Coastal Center on Hutchinson Island got a truck load of Sting Rays this week because SeaWorld in Orlando had a surplus of the docile, yet sometimes maligned sea creatures.

20 Large Cownose Rays, Five small ones, and a Southern ray were delivered to the research and education center.

Right now the big ones are in quarantine, but will later be placed in a 750,000 gallon Lagoon where they will have plenty of space to swim.

The smaller ones are in a touch tank.

A new attraction at SeaWorld Orlando recently opened up and there was no space for the rays.

"Having rays on exhibit is important to us so we can explain to people they are not aggressive animals. That they are actually gentle. The only time they strike a person with their barb is when they are trying to protect themselves or they're scared," said Rodger White, Aquarium & Life Support Manager.

SeaWorld has transferred sea creatures before to research centers when they've run into a surplus.

The Florida Oceanographic Coastal Center on Hutchinson Island is open most days from 10am to 5pm.