Nature Foundation Responds to Report of Intentional Harming of Baby Rays at Mullet Bay Beach

Caption:A Local Caribbean Manta Ray

Calls on Community to Have a Greater Respect for Natural Wildlife

The St. Maarten Nature Foundation received numerous reports over the weekend of a group of individuals intentionally harming baby rays at the far end of Mullet Bay Beach.


During the summer months rays give birth to very delicate and fragile offspring that are very sensitive to disturbances. "We were called by a family that was enjoying the beach regarding some individuals spearing baby rays for the fun. This is very worrying and we responded to the call. We let all involved know that not only is the intentional harming of sharks and rays prohibited, but that there should in general be more of a respect for life than that," read a Nature Foundation statement.

The practice of intentionally fishing for sharks on St. Maarten has been forbidden since October 12th 2011, when the Ministry TEATT banned the practice of intentionally poaching sharks in the territorial waters of St. Maarten. The act of trying to catch by  tracking, stalking, baiting, chasing, trapping, hooking, netting, shooting or otherwise hunting –  sharks, rays and skates is prohibited and therefore the animals may not be wounded, caught, landed, or killed. Violators may be punished with jail and a considerable fine may be issued. If Sharks are accidentally caught all steps should be taken to release the animal with as little harm as possible.