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Fever of Cownose rays spotted along coast of Sanibel Island

Incredible new video shows dozens of Cownose rays swimming right on the coast of Sanibel!

The tourist who took the video, Cameron Perdue, told us he’s surprised his video has captured the attention of so many people and is happy they are enjoying what he saw.

He and his girlfriend came from Canada, choosing Sanibel as their escape from the cold and snow.

“It was pretty special to capture something like that,” Perdue said.

He had no idea a simple beach day would lead to the incredible sighting.

“I was just out there enjoying the beach,” he said. “We walked up and saw them swimming by; looked like there was maybe 10 or 15 of them so, of course, I went back and grabbed my drone and flew it up in the air.”

As amazing as this is, it’s not unusual at this time of the year. Research scientist Rick Bartleson said his team at the Sanibel-Captiva Conservation Foundation spotted a huge swarm like this one a few weeks ago.

“Yes, very common and seasonal and they eat clams,” Bartleson said. “They’re pretty widespread and they migrate north and south.”

Bartleson wants to make one thing clear: don’t be afraid if you come upon one or many Cownose rays.

“You’re pretty safe with this kind of breed,” he said. “You don’t have to worry about getting stung by them.”

He says the rays, named for the two bumps on their heads, are pretty safe and will most likely swim away from you if you come close to one.

Cameron’s takeaway: “Next time I travel, I’m definitely going to bring my drone with me again in hopes of capturing more wildlife.”

Reporter:Michelle Mackonochie
Writer:Briana Harvath
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