A viral video of a man seemingly tickling a stingray has drawn public ire as many people see this as an act of animal cruelty. Controversy has divided the viewing audience between people who think the video was amusing and for those who say the man committed animal cruelty.
The video shows a stingray on a boat lying on a towel. One part of the video shows the stingray on its back while the man appears to be tickling its belly and then saying:
How do you tickle a fish?
The stingray reacts to the man’s fingers by closing its pectoral fins and opening its mouth. A follow-up video by the same person identifying at @mafishingguy shows the man tickling the subject’s gill slits as it opens its mouth and moves its pectoral fins.
People on the boat laugh as the snout opening seems as if the animal is smiling.
“Poor thing is suffocating and suffering for your TikTok video. I hope (you) at least put it back in the water at the end,” one viewer stated.
The main threats to stingrays are habitat loss, overfishing, and climate change. Not only are they caught for their meat, their gill plates are also used in Chinese medicine.
Check out the video: