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Author: Subject: CAUTION! MANY STING RAYS IN THE BAY THIS YEAR.
Pompano
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[*] posted on 2-15-2010 at 11:07 AM
CAUTION! MANY STING RAYS IN THE BAY THIS YEAR.


This seems to be the Year of the Skates in Conception Bay. I've been seeing them everywhere...and can't really recall having seen so many in my 40 years here.

It's a sheer pleasure for me to see any creature in nature, especially marine life in our threatened Sea of Cortez, but be cautious of these little guys when wading, swimming, or diving. Practice that old Baja shuffle when wading..and look for the cloudy puffs of sand they will make when they see or sense your approach.

Co-pilot is doing it right.







You can easiy spot them on the bottom when kayaking. Look for the triangle-shapes...slowly moving along...then ...poof!...they explode away. Enjoy, just don't touch!




Above all, remember..these creatures are not hunting YOU. This is thier territory and you are the intruder. I can only recall ..oh, say...7 or 8 cases maybe, where the victim was actually chased down, pulled under...and eaten. :rolleyes:



Here are some photos of ones we saw the other day while at Dead Dog beach on Isla Barga. (This is within Coyote Bay of Bahia Concepcion....Bay of Conception.) It was a typical beautifully calm day with crystal clear water. Right, Co-pilot?


















Note: Sometimes it's NOT a skate down there....this guy was also just offshore of Dead Dog..just hanging around...waiting...patiently waiting. :spingrin:



Okay, enough humor. Back to the business of keeping you from Harm's Way.

Here are but a few very helpful sites about the nature of sting rays and skates..and what to do if stung. Forewarned is forearmed. Research these and google others on your own. Make a first aid kit and carry it with you to Baja. (I always carry a shaker of Adolf's Meat Tenderizer in the boat and Jeep. It helps, believe me!)

As some guests from Idaho found out a couple years ago...ouch, that must hurt, Miguel!'

The letter opener next to his leg is made from the serrated stinger of a larger ray. Nasty piece of business, which you DON"T want in your ankle.







http://www.emedicinehealth.com/stingray_injury/article_em.ht...

http://firstaid.about.com/od/bitesstings/ht/06_stingray.htm

http://firstaid.webmd.com/stingray-injury-treatment

http://www.associatedcontent.com/article/2497703/how_to_trea...

HAVE FUN! BE SAFE!



[Edited on 2-15-2010 by Pompano]




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[*] posted on 2-15-2010 at 11:37 AM


I like this from the WebMD site:

Oral pain medication such as acetaminophen (Tylenol) or ibuprofen (Advil) can be given if the person is not vomiting and not allergic to it.

and then later on:

Pain medication, such as narcotics, given through an IV may be needed until the heat has neutralized the toxin.

A gram of ibuprofen (for an adult) MAY decrease the pain. An IV narcotic is more realistic.

Tramadol would be good. Over the counter in Mex.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tramadol




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[*] posted on 2-15-2010 at 11:53 AM


Adolph's meat tenderizer, thanks.. just added in... and thanks for the all the pretty pictures.. the water is really unbelievable ... :):)



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[*] posted on 2-15-2010 at 12:21 PM


Been hit a few times, even when doing the shuffle. Got hit in the ankle last summer and "IT HURTS" believe me. Tenderizer is helpful, but by far the best remedy is soaking in "HOT, VERY HOT, AS HOT AS YOU CAN STAND WATER" Soak as long as you can without doing burn damage to the affected area. I ended up with an infection and was on antibiotics for weeks. Miserable.
Maybe wearing cowboy boots is the answer?:biggrin::biggrin:




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[*] posted on 2-15-2010 at 05:39 PM


Yes...

'Doc' at Camp Gecko recommended hot water compresses a few years ago to someone who was hit (in April)... hot as you can stand, but not so hot to damage skin.

The heat counter-acts the poison.




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[*] posted on 2-15-2010 at 07:22 PM


Roger, I have heard that the juice of the cactus called "Old Man Cactus" also helps. Never tried it, however, several of the locals in Mulege have recommended it. You are right on about hot water as Melinda has been hit and the hot water helped quite a lot. Jim
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[*] posted on 2-15-2010 at 09:57 PM


It happened almost 3 years ago but seems like only yesterday. The following is an account of what it feels like to step on a ray:


CLICK ON THIS

[Edited on 2-16-2010 by Skipjack Joe]
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[*] posted on 5-9-2010 at 09:56 PM
Baja's Stingrays and Man-Eating Plankton


Mick and I keep a little propane stove as part of our Scuba Diving First Aid Kit. It and a 3 quart pot are a part of our dive gear. I swear, a nasty stingray hit is just that, nasty! It injects a neurotoxin into the flesh. Hot water neutralizes the neurotoxin. Medical care is only needed if you suspect there's part of the barb broken off. Otherwise, when the pain subsides from the hot water just clean the wound and put a bandage to cover it and expect to rest and keep the limb elevated for a few days.

We also carry a bottle of white vinegar. Its for the unexpected stings from tiny creatures that live among the seaweed at shallow depths. You can encounter it unexpectedly even if you're not near seaweed as it may be floating around. These stings hurt and may welt-up a bit if you don't douse the affected skin with that vinegar.

By comparison, the pain from man-eating plankton is nothing compared to trying to run away from yourself after being hit by a stingray. There've been beach people come directly to the dive center for first aid treatment. When we see 'em hobbling up the steps outside I go run for the propane stove.
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[*] posted on 5-10-2010 at 08:10 AM


Having had the most unpleasurable expeirence of being hit by a sting ray, hot water is the way to go. Narcotics, and tequila help. Had a nasty infection, my foot turned black and was 3 times the size. I would say go to a doctor, get it cleaned out and be put on antibiotics. I had done that and still had a naty infection, that the doctors in central canada (no oceans for a 1000 km) had know idea how to treat.



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[*] posted on 5-10-2010 at 08:30 AM


Quote:
Originally posted by Bajagypsy
Having had the most unpleasurable expeirence of being hit by a sting ray, hot water is the way to go. Narcotics, and tequila help. Had a nasty infection, my foot turned black and was 3 times the size. I would say go to a doctor, get it cleaned out and be put on antibiotics. I had done that and still had a naty infection, that the doctors in central canada (no oceans for a 1000 km) had know idea how to treat.


Wow, that sounds BAD. Was it a puncture wound?

My understanding is that there are two basic types of wounds, a slice where the tail scrapes across the skin and a punture wound where you get stabbed. Both hurt like heck but the stab is more dangerous because it is difficult to clean, and in addition to the toxins there are nasty bacteria on those things. I suppose bacteria are toxins too but you know what I mean.

Puncture wounds should be cleaned by a professional as soon as possible and then probably re-cleaned and dressed daily, by a pro. I bet the staff in the clinic in Mulege know all about treating sting ray wounds. Slices are easier to clean but you need a disinfectant and then some antibiotic ointment to be sure.

I've had two slice type wounds. In both cases it took about an hour for the excruciating pain to subside. Screaming helps.

Wear surfing booties or at least some kind of water shoes. I don't go in the bay without them now.

I was standing on the beach at Santispac when I took this photo of a little monster swimming by. Watch where you step.


[Edited on 5-10-2010 by k-rico]

sting_ray.jpg - 48kB




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[*] posted on 5-10-2010 at 09:28 AM


K-rico it almost went all they way through the top of my foot, so I guess that would be a puncture wound. I did go to the clinic in Mulege and the doctor there was fantastic. We were camping on the beach and my hubby ran back to the beach packed up our camp stuff and we got a hotel in Mulege for a few days. I have learned my lesson and Never step down in the ocean, I do the suffle!



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[*] posted on 5-10-2010 at 09:28 AM


Quote:
Quote:
Originally posted by k-rico

My understanding is that there are two basic types of wounds, a slice where the tail scrapes across the skin and a punture wound where you get stabbed. Both hurt like heck but the stab is more dangerous because it is difficult to clean, and in addition to the toxins there are nasty bacteria on those things. I suppose bacteria are toxins too but you know what I mean.

Puncture wounds should be cleaned by a professional as soon as possible and then probably re-cleaned and dressed daily, by a pro. I bet the staff in the clinic in Mulege know all about treating sting ray wounds. Slices are easier to clean but you need a disinfectant and then some antibiotic ointment to be sure.

I've had two slice type wounds. In both cases it took about an hour for the excruciating pain to subside. Screaming helps.

Wear surfing booties or at least some kind of water shoes. I don't go in the bay without them now.

I was standing on the beach at Santispac when I took this photo of a little monster swimming by. Watch where you step.


[Edited on 5-10-2010 by k-rico]


Its our experience that the staff at the Mulege Clinic is not trained in treating water-related injuries. The clinic is staffed by young interns from the mainland who rotate in and out.

In my opinion only, if you're hit by a stingray get it in hot water pronto. After a good soak the pain will subside. Then consider seeking out treatment.

As divers we wear 3 ml. neoprene boots with rubberized tops and hard soles. A stingray barb can pierce that! Always look where you're going and do the stingray shuffle when you're in the shallows. In 35 years of being in the water nearly every day somewhere in the world, Mick has been hit only once. It was on his foot thru the boot while he was exiting from a dive down at the Mulege Lighthouse. He hurried over to El Patron Restaurant and they heated up a pot of water for him which quickly brought pain relief. He did feel some nerve damage in his foot for about a year after, but suffered no bacterial infection perhaps because the hot water encouraged the wound to bleed and clean itself out.

The good news is that as the water temperatures rise in the Sea of Cortez during the late spring and summer months, the stingrays move into deeper and colder environments and away from our precious tootsies.

If you're near Mulege, come to the dive center or to our house. (There've been people show up on our doorstep at 3 in the morning with blackwidow spider bite). We'll help you and take you to the clinic if you need to go.
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[*] posted on 5-10-2010 at 10:44 AM


Lifeguard training was to use the Hot water and clean. (Vinigar and urine is more for jelly fish and sea urchins - do not pee on a open wound like a sting ray)

There were 2 types of stings (as mentioned above), the puncture is usually due to stepping on or near the critter, the scrape is more from it swimming past you. These latter ones you will see higher up on peoples legs - former ones more down by the ankle.

Other than the pain, the most sever concern is infection and this can be from not cleaning throughly, or having the barb's sheath stuck under your skin. The barb does not remain behind - it is like a knife, it goes in and comes out - what can remain is the barb's sheath (which people think is the actual barb).

If you have a hot co-pilot that got stung, other procedures may be necessary ;D

[Edited on 5-10-2010 by ILikeMex]
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[*] posted on 5-27-2010 at 08:30 PM


Hot water and a ballena worked for me. had my foot in HOT(like ouch this F'ing hurts HOT) for an hour....No pain after the hour. I still have a scar from the puncture.

The woman who hooked me up with the water, told me the stingray sting was worse than childbirth...So when our son was born, I tried telling my wife....I've dealt with worse pain...I'VE BEEN STUNG BY A STINGRAY....which earned me a very grim look:?:


Pompano,

That's a pretty good looking Stingray in the 1st photo:O

[Edited on 5-28-2010 by classicbajabronco]
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[*] posted on 5-28-2010 at 12:31 AM
High voltage, low amperage cure


Brought this subject up around the dinner table today and was told that snake bites and sting ray action can be counter acted by holding a spark plug to the area and jolting yourself repeatedly. For the conversation I suggested that if the spark plug worked than a Tazer would be even more effective.

Something about the shock affecting the inter-muscular reaction of the venom.

Anybody else heard of this? Very curious since my last encounter was dealt with thorough very hot water and dark rum.
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[*] posted on 5-28-2010 at 06:23 AM


i understand there are tazers available specifically for stingray stings...it does the same thing as hot water; it coagulates the toxins.



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[*] posted on 5-28-2010 at 08:18 AM


Quote:
Originally posted by akmaxx
... was told that snake bites and sting ray action can be counter acted by holding a spark plug to the area and jolting yourself repeatedly. For the conversation I suggested that if the spark plug worked than a Tazer would be even more effective.
Something about the shock affecting the inter-muscular reaction of the venom.
Anybody else heard of this? Very curious since my last encounter was dealt with thorough very hot water and dark rum.



Snakebite and venom guru Dr Sean Bush was asked if spark plugs and other shock therapies had any effect on snake venom, and he said nada, nada.

The hot water treatment for stingray venom is effective because the high temp breaks down the protein in the venom. I would think that if there was a tazer that generated enough heat to neutralize the toxin, it would be like a electric cautery device used in surgery and your foot would look like a plate of carne asada by the time you got relief from the pain of the sting.

Hot water works.

[Edited on 5-29-2010 by oladulce]
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[*] posted on 5-28-2010 at 09:42 AM


Just another word on the Conception Bay sting ray conditions. They are still here in abundance..with tons of small youngters. We see them daily and are quite used to them.... but never take them for granted.

Be Cautious.




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eureka.gif posted on 5-28-2010 at 12:39 PM
Cure, not to get stung!!


I got stung last week at Ligui, near Loreto.
From now on we use the stingray- repellant, as shown on the picure:light:.
Simply drag the rake in front of you and see the rays fly away!!

[Edited on 5-28-2010 by Bielefeld]

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[*] posted on 5-28-2010 at 01:24 PM


I stepped on a ray over a month ago, on a 'secret' beach north of La Paz. The pain was excrutiating. I didn't do the hot water treatment. When I returned to San Diego, two days later, I went to doc, got antibiotics and everything subsided (swelling, pain) for about a week. Then I seemed to relapse - foot got really swollen, couldn't walk for a couple of days, more antibiotics. Now, the pain is gone, but every time I take a long walk (my preferred exercise routine), my foot swells again for a few days. The wound site is completely numb, like there was some nerve damage.

I know everyone reacts differently, but are my symptoms 'normal'?

[Edited on 5-28-2010 by danaeb]




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