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Mangrove whiptail stingrays such as the one in Wild Reef can grow to a remarkable size, and spend most of their time cruising along the bottom of their habitats.

Stingrays

Stingrays are supple, strong—and flat as a pancake! Found in tropical and subtropical seas around the world, as well as the Amazon basin, these bottom-feeding fishes rest undetected on seafloors or riverbeds. A low profile and speckled patterns help them hide, especially when they bury themselves in sand or silt to complete the camouflage.

Guests touche cownose rays at Shedd Aquarium's Stingray Touch habitat.

Ready for touch

Cownose rays are tactile animals—they naturally school together, brushing up against each other while swimming. This social status makes them a perfect fit for hands-on encounters at Stingray Touch.

No need to worry about the "sting" in the species' name. While wild stingrays have extendable spines to protect them from predators, at Shedd these "stingers" are harmlessly clipped, just like fingernails.

Discover meal prep for cownose rays with aquarist Alice Bereman.

“There are so many animals people can’t get close to. This species is very gentle!”

Senior Aquarist Alice Bereman
A tiger ray swims in the Amazon Rising habitat at Shedd Aquarium

Tiger Ray

A yellow stingray swims over some coral in Wild Reef at Shedd Aquarium

Yellow Ray

Mangrove whiptail stingrays can grow to a large size, and spend most of their time swimming along the ocean floor.

Mangrove Whiptail

A blue spotted stingray pup, its body roughly triangular, rests against the bottom of its habitat.

Spotted Ray