NEW Stingray Feeding Experience at The Florida Aquarium

INSIDE LOOK: New Stingray Feeding Experience at The Florida Aquarium

The Florida Aquarium just debuted a new Stingray Feeding Experience at its Stingray Beach touch tank, giving you a chance to see what it’s like to be a biologist who cares for these majestic creatures.

This is a unique opportunity to go behind the scenes as you step inside the Aquarium’s commissary where food is carefully selected and measured for the animals. You’ll get to help the biologist prepare the food on schedule and learn more about what it takes to care for stingrays.

You’ll also learn about the importance of sustainable seafood, not just for feeding the animals at the Aquarium, but also the importance of shopping for sustainable seafood at your local grocery store.

Anna Garcia, Senior Biologist at the Florida Aquarium, said, “I think this is a cool opportunity for guests because you get to see what we do in our normal day. Like this is how we take care of our stingrays. People usually just see it when we’re feeding, but they don’t see the intricate details of like what it takes to prep their food, how we manage their diet, and then how we actually offer food to them, make sure each one of them is eating, as well as doing all of the training that we do for their animal welfare here.”

Once the food is prepared and weighed, your group of up to six people will then head out to Stingray Beach touch tank where you’ll get to feed the stingrays and even take part in a training session.

As a guest of the Aquarium, you normally get to touch the rays with two fingers, but as part of this program, your biologist will show you how to pet the animal which they do to ensure all feels right and the rays are healthy.

Feeding stingrays at Florida Aquarium
Feeding stingrays at Florida Aquarium. Photo by Laura Byrne.

The coolest part though is feeding the cow nose stingrays. You’ll hold their food like an ice cream cone underwater and they’ll swim up to you to grab the food with their mouths. It doesn’t hurt and they won’t bite. If anything, it tickles a bit.

“If I had this opportunity as a kid, it would be so inspiring because it’s just like we get to touch animals, but to be able to speak with the people who take care of them directly, see all the care that goes into taking care of them, but then also like getting the glimpses of this is how you do it, this is why we’re doing it,” said Garcia.

And who knows, maybe this experience will inspire a future marine biologist in your family!

Florida Aquarium Stingray Feeding Experience: Know Before You Go

  • The program is $30 per person.
  • Kids must be at least 8 years old or older.
  • Children between the ages 8-12 must be accompanied by a paid adult.
  • Experience is offered on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays at 2:10 pm
  • The session is 50 minutes long.
  • The program involves handling raw fish and shellfish.
  • Plan to check-in 15 minutes before the program start time.
  • You can book the Stingray Feeding Experience here.

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