Facts About the Teacup Stingray
The teacup stingray is known to scientist around the world as Potamotrygon reticulata but is also frequently called the reticulated stingray in laymen’s terms. Although not used as frequently as the other two, they may also be referred to as the long tail stingray. These stingrays are native to the countries of Columbia, Surinam, and Brazil.
This stingray variety is a freshwater fish that is illegal to own in a few states. Therefore, it is essential to look into the laws in your state before attempting to own one of these stingrays. Throughout this article we will explore multiple diverse facts about the teacup stingray to heighten your knowledge on the subject.
This particular variety of stingrays is able to be spotted easily due to its long, pointy tail and eyes that are significantly smaller than other freshwater varieties. Furthermore, their bodies are also flatter. At full maturation these stingrays reach up to about fourteen inches in diameter, obviously not including the length of the tail. As you can see, the teacup stingray is definitely one of the smaller varieties in the stingray family.
Since these stingrays have become increasingly popular in large household aquariums, it is essential that we examine their needs if housed within an aquarium. First, it is necessary to note that a minimum aquarium of one hundred twenty-five gallons is required. Although larger is preferred, anything smaller is not acceptable for these rays.
Believe it or not, these rays are great for aquariums with other fish as long as they are too large for the stingray to consume. They are very peaceful and spend most of their time ignoring other fish. However, males may be a bit aggressive toward other rays occasionally, especially during mating.
Furthermore, make sure not to house extremely aggressive fish with your stingray or they may attack your ray, causing it severe harm or even death. Moreover, with their preference being the bottom of the tank, you will rarely see these rays venturing to the surface.
Teacup stingrays prefer water that has a pH around six or seven with a temperature being near the upper seventies or lower eighties (Fahrenheit). Even though they are relatively hardy, these stingrays are not recommended for those that are not familiar with caring for more than your average aquarium fish.
One reason is due to their diet. These rays tend to eat worms (earth worms, black worms, blood worms) as well as small live fish that are within the aquarium.
Despite the ease for care, it is essential to understand that the teacup stingray, like all freshwater stingrays, is capable of stinging and have venom within its tail. Although this venom is not fatal it is very painful and requires medical assistance for proper treatment.
If stung make sure you immediately apply pressure but avoid placing a bandage on the affected area. Submerse the stung limb or area within hot (but tolerable) water. Be sure to disinfect the area after following the procedure above. Again, make sure you seek medical attention to ensure that the venom is extracted from the area.
In conclusion, the teacup stingray is a freshwater fish that can be kept in an aquarium as long as the tank is large enough. These fish feed off of worms as well as smaller fish and shrimp; therefore, they are not recommended for beginners.
However, their behavior enables them to do well with other non-aggressive fish since they keep to themselves and are extremely peaceful. Moreover, it is essential to note that they are venomous and if stung you should apply pressure, place the wound under water, and immediately seek medical attention (even though their venom is not lethal).
All in all, anyone with a significant knowledge of maintaining a large freshwater aquarium with a wide variety of fish should be equipped to properly care for these stingrays.