Stingrays find their way into home aquariums
THE freshwater stingray is fast becoming a mainstay in many home aquariums in Singapore.
Fish farms told My Paper yesterday at the Aquarama and Pet Asia exhibitions in Marina Bay Sands that there is rising demand for such fish, which can cost $200 to $3,000 each, or even more.
Mr Kenny Yap, executive chairman and managing director of ornamental-fish service provider Qian Hu, said that his firm has seen about a three-fold increase in sales of freshwater stingrays since it started importing and selling them more than 10 years ago.
Mr H. W. Tan, director of Kin Star Aqua World, said he sells about 100 stingrays each month, up from 40 when he first introduced the fish into his business six years ago.
On why freshwater stingrays have been growing in popularity, Mr Yap said customers are drawn to their "graceful movements and beauty".
Such stingrays can have coats with stark black-and-white spots or even tiger-like stripes.
"As a (tank) bottom-level feeder, it's also very hardy," Mr Yap added.
Mr Tan said that, because a stingray is large and can be pricey, "some people also see it as a status symbol".
The carnivorous ornamental fish can grow up to 45cm in diameter. It can produce venom which can be fatal to humans.
As with any aquarium fish, stingrays can be kept as pets, as long as their welfare is taken care of, said an Agri-Food & Veterinary Authority of Singapore spokesman.