Toms Tips About a Terror in Shallow Water
By Tom Neale, 8/5/2010
1. Some rays will hide, covered by sand, in shallow water. If you’re wading, even in clear water, you may not see it. If you step on it or otherwise upset it the ray may get you with his tail. This happened to Captain John Smith as he was wading in the Chesapeake Bay. The pain was so severe he thought he was going to die and had his men dig his grave. He survived.
2. In the Bahamas we’ve seen hammerhead shark foraging into very shallow waters, where we and other people were wading. They were after rays hiding in the sand.
3. Steve Irwin, the TV personality and nature lover, nicknamed the “Crocodile Hunter,” was tragically killed by a ray’s tail lashing through him.
4. I’ve swum underwater with beautiful leopard rays that were large and majestic enough to dwarf me. They are wonderful creatures.
5. But like so many creatures of the deep, beautiful rays can be very dangerous. It pays to be aware.
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