A spotted eagle ray (Aetobatus narinari) stealthy flies inches above columns of white sand seeking out its next snack in near shore Oahu waters. Hawaiians call rays Hīhīmanu, which translated literally means “flowing bird.”
Watching rays glide through the ocean brings to mind both birds and fighter jets. Their movements are subtle and effective with a confident calmness that can be both relaxing and unnerving to observers.
Often traveling in solitary, the spotted eagle ray have a venomous stingers at the base of their tail for protection. Eagle rays are sometimes seen jumping out of the water to avoid predators and to catch prey. Rays are actually related to the shark family.