I am much less enthusiastic about encountering skates or rays. I know that skates are harmless, but rays can inflict a nasty sting...and I can never remember how to tell them apart.
On Thursday, as I was pushing my rake, I disturbed a large flat fish which languidly flapped its "wings" and moved several feet away. I know that rays are not aggressive, so, even if it was a sting ray, I didn't expect it to attack me. But I was wary because it remained so close, and I didn't want to inadvertently step on it.
Of course, I didn't take a photo, but I got the following picture of an Atlantic Ocean, South American skate from Wikipedia Commons:
More about stingrays tomorrow.
Our most recent Ocracoke Newsletter is a compilation of humorous stories told by or about islanders. You can read it here: http://www.villagecraftsmen.com/news092113.htm.