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Rays are the large bottom dwelling Carnivorous Fish of the Order Rajiformes. They are Cartilaginous Fish having a flattened body with one or more stout Spines. Fresh Marine offers some interesting specimen of these Rays. Prior to proceeding to them however, let’s look at some of the common features of Rays.Compatibility.
Rays are aggressive in nature, which is coupled by their Carnivorous food habit and venomous Tail Spine. Rays are not Reef Compatible therefore; they are more suitable for Fish Only Marine Aquariums.
Habit & Habitat. Rays are usually found in the shallow coastal waters of Temperate Seas and Indo-Pacific Ocean. These venomous fish are Benthic Dwellers and dwell on Sand, Silt, Sand Seabed, and Coral Reefs, where they can easily hide or avoid predators.
Morphology. Rays are also referred to as the cartilaginous cousins of Sharks. They have a long, fattened Body with a Tail, which bears Spines. The underside of these Spines produces venom that can be deadly. Rays have Pectoral Fins, which are fused to the sides of their Head and have Gill openings on the Ventral side. Most of these fish do not have Pelvic or Dorsal Fins. The Mouth is present on the lower side of their Body and Eyes on the top of their Head, owing to which, they are unable to see their prey directly. Instead, Rays use electric impulses and smell to hunt for food.
Ideal Marine Aquarium Environment. Rays require a Specific Gravity of 1.020-1.025, a pH of 8.1-8.4, and a Temperature of 72-78°F, in the aquarium. In a Fish Only Aquarium, the Specific Gravity should fall between 1.020-1.023. Rays require an aquarium of minimum 150 to 300 Gallons capacity. Keep ample hiding places such as, Corals, Caves, and Rocks in your aquarium. Rays require sand substrate at the bottom of the aquarium, as a coarse substrate can easily scratch their body. Make sure that no Copper is present in your tank, as it may prove lethal to the Rays.
Aquarium Feeding. Rays feed on meaty foods such as Live Shrimps, Live Fishes, Shellfish, Squid, Turtles, Birds, Mollusks, and sometimes chopped Crustacean flesh.
Aquarium Breeding. Rays are Ovoviviparous, resulting in live birth.
Care. Extreme caution must be taken while netting these fish. Usually Expert Aquarists should handle Rays. Some of the best selling Rays from the Family Dasyatidae, available at Fresh Marine are listed below. Blue Dot Stingray (Taeniura lymma). Also known as Sting Ray Blue, Spotted Sting Ray, Bluespotted Ribbontail Ray, and Blues Spotted Stingray, these Rays have Tan colored body with Blue dots. Though they are relatively smaller than the other Rays, however an adult Blue Dot Stingray still needs good 150 gallons of water in the aquarium. These Rays grow up to 9” to 10” disc.
California Spotted Stingray (Urolophus halleri). Also known as Spotted Stingray, Round Stingray, and Spotted Caribbean Stingray, these Rays are dark Brown and Grayish Brown in colors with either Plain Spots, Mottled or Tan Spots, & Rings on the Dorsal side, and pale Yellow, Orange, or White on the Ventral side. California Spotted Stingrays can grow up to a size of 22.8” and requires a tank of at least 200 gallons.
Shovelnose Shark (Rhinobatos productus). Also known as the BullShark, the Bay Shark, the Lazy-Gray, & the Black Whaler, these Rays have a Charcoal colored upper body and White colored underside, with Yellow markings. In addition, you can see a faint Yellow Stripe running along their sides. The female Rays are slightly larger than their male counterparts are. They grow up to a length of about 7 feet and require a rank of minimum 1000 Gallons capacity.
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