- Reticulated Stingray, Teacup Stingray
Scientific Name- Potamotrygon Reticulata
Native geographical area- Amazon Basin, South America
Native habitat- murky streams and rivers with sandy or muddy bottoms and submerged vegetation.
Maximum Size- 12-14 inches in disk diameter (this does not include the length of the tail!)
Minimum Aquarium Size-125 gallons, 72”x18”x24”
Diet- most meaty foods such as black worms (my ray‘s favorite), bloodworms, earth worms, krill, beef heart, even live feeders or any fish small enough to fit in it’s mouth.
Tank zone- bottom dwellers
Temperament & compatibility- teacup stingrays tend to be very peaceful and will usually ignore other fish in the aquarium (aside from eating very small fish). Males, however, can become aggressive towards other rays and when it is spawning time, the male will bite the female’s disk as a part of courtship.
Hardness range-soft water (less than 10 DH)
pH range- around 6-7 is usually optimal
Temperature range- 78-82 degrees F
Notable sensitivities- burns: stingrays are very sensitive and even a slight touch of a heater can cause a burn. make sure to buy a heater cover or place the heater elsewhere such as a sump if that is being used.
Hardiness- teacup stingrays are fairly hardy for freshwater stingrays, but are not for beginning hobbyists.
Physical description-the teacup stingray is an olive color with dark markings that sort of resemble a net. They have a white underbody. They’re tail is about 1/2-3/4 of the length of they’re body.
During courtship, the male may bite the disk of the female.
Stingrays give birth to live young.
Sexing a stingray is easy: males have claspers and females do not. Claspers are small fins under the base of the tail.
First Aide- as most people may know, all freshwater stingrays have a venomous barb at the end of their tail. The venom is not fatal, but it causes a lot of pain. Here are some steps to take if one was ever stung by a freshwater stingray:
Apply pressure to the wound, but do not apply a bandage to put pressure on.
Place the wound in hot water. This can help lesson the pain.
Disinfect the area after removing it from the hot water.
Seek medical care.
Restrictions- The following U.S. states have restrictions on freshwater stingrays. They are either illegal to own or you need proper permits (usually only for educational or research reasons).:
Tankmates - As mentioned before, teacup stingrays are usually very peaceful and will mind their own business (as long was the tankmates are not too small to swallow). Avoid aggressive tankmates. There have been stories some more aggressive attacking the ray’s disk and tearing them to shreds. In my own experience, I had a tinfoil barb that was very aggressive and nipped off some of my teacup stingray’s disk. This forced her into hiding and she was deprived of food. Also, some plecos have been known to suck off the stingray’s mucus coating on their disk and they will eventually succumb to disease and die.
Diseases - Argulus - commonly called Fish Lice. The small parasites attach themselves to the stingray’s disk and extract nourishment by piercing the flesh with a pointed organ called a style. The wound can cause bacterial or fungal infections. Although one or two may not cause a serious problem, a serious infestation can be fatal. To remove the argulus, one can carefully remove it with tweezers.