(CMR) The Department of Environment said it is aware of the video of the injured stingray; however, the Department assured that while the injury sustained is severe, trauma to the wing area is not life-threatening and will usually heal very well on its own once the ray is breathing and feeding.
“Our graceful and friendly stingrays not only share their marine home with us, but the ones who frequent the Sandbar share their lives with us, representing Cayman personally for visitors and residents. It is all of our responsibility to protect them,” the Department wrote in a post on social media.
The Department also pointed out that stingrays are a protected species, which means it is illegal to harm them in any way. Anyone who witnesses suspicious or illegal activity in action may report it immediately to 911 or the Department of Environment by calling enforcement at 916-4271 or messaging WhatsApp with as much information as possible, including the name of the vessel, company, and/or persons involved and clear photos or video of the incident.
All information provided to the DoE will be kept strictly confidential, and incidents will be investigated. Where we can gather evidence identifying a person breaking the law, including deliberately or negligently harming a stingray, a case will be submitted to the Director of Public Prosecutions, the Department added.
Members of the community are urged to exercise caution and respect the marine environment at all times as they engage in various activities.
Fishers are asked to ensure they are careful when releasing unwanted catches, like stingrays, and should feel free to cut the line as close to the hook as they feel safe when releasing animals they can’t handle, like stingrays. Boaters are reminded to follow the WIZ rules when approaching the Sandbar by not bringing their vessel or anchor shallower than the minimum depth of three feet, especially in choppy water. This depth keeps boat props and other parts from getting too close to stingrays, people, or the Sandbar.