Following mysterious stingray deaths, ZooTampa brings in experts and sends samples overseas

“We are committed to conducting a thorough and transparent investigation.”


After every stingray housed inside a touch tank mysteriously died last month, ZooTampa says it will send water and tissue samples to a lab in Germany and hire two experts to help with the ongoing investigation.

ZooTampa did not give specifics, but said the German lab is the “gold standard” for water testing, and the two experts have “extensive aquatic experience in the zoo and aquarium industry.”

“We are grateful for the outpouring of support as we continue to mourn the loss of our stingrays,” said ZooTampa spokesperson Sandra Torres to Creative Loafing Tampa Bay. “We are committed to conducting a thorough and transparent investigation.”

Torres also said it should take several weeks for the test results to come and for the investigation to wrap up.

As we previously reported, on May 27 all twelve stingrays inside the Stingray Bay exhibit were found dead. The 16,000-gallon saltwater touch tank housed seven cownose stingrays, four Southern stingrays and one Atlantic stingray. No other animal species were kept in the tank. 

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About The Author

Colin Wolf

Colin Wolf has been working with weekly newspapers since 2007 and has been the Digital Editor for Creative Loafing Tampa since 2019. He is also the Director of Digital Content Strategy for CL's parent company, Euclid Media Group.
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