The Rays Touch Experience is the first of its kind at a professional sports venue. The 35-foot, 10,000-gallon exhibit is located just beyond the right-center field fence at Tropicana Field.
This unique and educational fan experience has been created through a partnership with The Florida Aquarium. The beautiful cownose stingrays are the same species that live in the waters of Tampa Bay and are cared for by the Florida Aquarium staff. A complete wellness program including a healthy diet, routine medical exams and behavioral observation is provided for the rays.
Can I bring my food and drink in?
Unfortunately, no. This is for the safety of our animals to ensure that no food or drink falls into the habitat.
Can I stand my child up on the side of the habitat?
All fans must have two feet on the ground - no kneeling, sitting, or standing on the habitat ledge. Children that are not able to reach the ground when leaning over the pool, must be held by an adult only.
Is it okay to put my waterproof GoPro/camera/phone into the water?
While these devices can capture amazing underwater memories, we cannot allow them into our habitat for safety reasons. You may use the viewing windows below to obtain similar video footage of the underwater habitat, but no objects can be set on the pool ledge.
Is it okay to splash or tap to get the stingrays’ attention?
No, splashing or tapping the water is not permissible. Disturbance of the water may startle the rays.
Can we touch the stingrays?
Yes! You may touch the rays using two fingers, on the tips of their wings.
Is the Touch Tank always open?
No. The rays take a break from touching every hour at the top of the hour for 10 minutes during every home game. Fan Hosts will give a 2-minute warning prior to the scheduled hourly break.
Why can’t I touch their back?
Stingrays have something known as a lateral line that is located on their back. This allows them to feel movements and vibrations in the water, and touching this area simply makes the stingrays uncomfortable.
What types of rays are in this tank?
We currently house several Cownose Stingrays.
Why are the stingrays different colors?
The Cownose Stingrays will vary in color and can range anywhere from a pale grey to a deep dark grey. It is easily relatable to our hair color or skin tone.
What do the stingrays eat?
We give our stingrays restaurant quality seafood. They are given a variety of foods including squid, shrimp, clams, and anchovies.
When do the stingrays eat? Can we feed them?
Our biologists feed our stingrays at various times throughout the day. This mimics their natural behavior as they are opportunistic feeders in their natural environment. Unfortunately, at this time, guests are not permitted to feed the stingrays.
Will they shock me?
They will not. While there are electric rays in Florida, these rays cannot produce any electricity. The ones that can shock carry the same volts as a small battery.
Will the stingrays sting me?
Although they are in the stingray family, we clip our stingrays’ barbs so that they are not able to “sting” you. It is very similar to how we clip our own fingernails, except the stingrays’ barbs will take a few months to grow back. Because of this, we will typically clip the barbs about once or twice a year.
Why do some of the stingrays have broken tails?
This is common and can be from simply hitting their tail on something. The tail may completely break off (which is why some of the rays have shorter tails) or show a kink. It does not impact the health of the animals.
Why do stingrays swim around with their mouths open?
The stingray’s mouth is underneath the body and not on the front of the face. Cownose Stingrays have frontal lobes that will be able to detect movement, and even heartbeats in the sand, which helps to find food throughout the day.
Do stingrays have live birth or lay eggs?
These rays are ovoviviparous, meaning that they fertilize and hatch eggs internally, and then give live birth.