One year after 12 rays died, ZooTampa will reopen stingray touch tank

The future of the interactive habitat has been unclear to the masses— until now.

Photo via ZooTampa
ZooTampa announced a slew of new additions coming in 2022,  including the reopening of the Stingray Bay exhibit.

In the summer of 2021, a mass stingray death shook the workers at ZooTampa to their core. All 12 stingrays in Stingray Bay died of gas embolisms with officials referring to the incident as a "supersaturation event."

The future of the interactive habitat has been unclear to the masses— until now. The new and improved space includes a 34,000-gallon saltwater pool that will still include  cownose and southern stingrays, along with other safe-to-touch species.

Also in the "new in 22" announcement, ZooTampa's David A. Straz Jr. Manatee Critical Care Center—already the second-largest care center in the United States—will receive a nursery pool to help care for baby manatees, or calves.

Other exhibits include hamadryas baboons swinging in on March 1 and the Florida Wilds—an immersive and spacious area available for patrons to get an up-close look at animals native to Florida. The common alligator, skunk, and flamingo will call this habitat home, alongside the endangered Florida panther and red wolf.

The grand opening is slated to be on March 3.

You can purchase tickets and membership passes via

About The Author

Brandalynn Nuñez Cepeda

Magazine journalism student with an affinity for music writing. Brandalynn has previously written for Glitter Magazine and was the editor-in-chief/contributor of USF's Her Campus chapter.
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