Skates and Rays
Skates, stingrays, and other rays are common in nearly all Mid Atlantic estuaries.
Stingrays and other rays include: Atlantic stingray, southern stingray, bluntnose stingray, cownose ray, bullnose ray, butterfly rays, and Atlantic manta ray.
Skate species include: barndoor, thorny, smooth, little, and clearnose.
Skates and rays are often caught most often by accident by bottom fishing anglers. Most species readily bite on squid, crab, shrimp, clam, and other common baits. A few species are considered edible.
Several species of skates and rays are taken by bowfishing and other alternative fishing methods.
Some rays can pose threats to fishermen. A number of stingrays and other rays are armed with spines, which can inflict serious wounds. Some species use their long, whiplike tails as weapons, even when removed from the water.
Even small skates deserve respect, as some species are equipped with thorn-like armor.