Giant spotted eagle ray hops on Florida family’s boat

Animals

SANIBEL, Fla. (WFLA) – A giant eagle ray stunned a Florida family when it flew out of the water and onto their boat near Sanibel last weekend.

Mike Healy told ABC 7 his family was on their way home from Sanibel when the spotted eagle ray leap out of the water, and said the large animal ended up in the middle of their boat.

“We thought it was a spaceship. I mean it just — you can’t prepare yourself for that. I mean it’s four and a half foot wide, and it’s coming right at you,” Healy told the news station.

Healy issued a “mayday” call with the boat’s radio.

“She said, ‘What’s your distress?’ and I said, ‘I have a 200-pound ray in my boat!'” Healy recalled.

A crew from Coast Guard Station Fort Myers Beach responded to lift the ray out of the boat and release it back into the water.

“He was a pretty big boy,” Ronald Shawver of the USCG told the news station.

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