Based on significant number of scientific research, it has been proven how animals have positive influence on young children. Growing up with cats or dogs teaches kids responsibility and kindness. These youngsters learn from very early age that sharing is caring and are a bit more happy than those who don’t own a pet.
But one boy named Joel made a very special friend: a giant stingray!
Joel enjoys spending time with the fishermen in Valle Gran Rey. In this village in the Canary Islands there is a harbor in which the local people throw bycatch and attract many different sea creatures.
Among all those unusual creatures there is a giant stingray that gets to greet little Joel every single day.
Luckily, someone took notice of this uncommon friendship and put it on tape.
Joel and the other boy know how to attract their friend by putting their hands in the water, offering food.
The most unusual thing is that the stingray recognizes Joel and lets him pet it on the nose.
It appears that the giant stingray’s all time favorite food are the shrimps Joel feed it with. Some kind fishermen who know of this relationship make sure they leave a box full of shrimps for Joel.
Once the giant creature is full, it gets another pet on its nose and head and then slowly disappears into the deep water.
It is believed that stingrays can be extremely dangerous when they feel threatened and use their poisonous stinger to attack the enemy. But this video shows how friendly they can be.
The video of lovely Joel and his pal was seen more than 50 million times once it was posted on YouTube.
People were staggered by the sight and one even wrote:
“My faith in humanity’s restored. These boys have good souls.”
Another commenter loved seeing how respectful Joel was with the stingray:
“This is really amazing. It’s also good to see that the boy knows to respect boundaries and doesn’t go too far (e.g. jumping in with the ray). The ray flapping back to the boy was so fantastic.”
A third commenter discussed their experience diving with stingrays:
“Sting rays are members of the shark family but they’re very friendly and playful in the water. I’ve dived with them and had great fun playing with them. They’re wonderful creatures.”
We do see children bonding with animals all the time, but having a stingray for a friend isn’t something we get to see every day. You really have to see it to believe it!
Check the below video and make sure you share it with your friends.