From Steve Young
First rule of cleaning a ray is don’t let go if the table, or bench is not level.
First feel along the body to find the solid piece of meat that runs in the middle of the ray to keep from puncturing it’s organs.
Cut along the wing edge, and make yourself a invered U-shapped tab to use as a grip
Cut a hole big enough to put your finger in to get a better grip. Way too much slime to hold without it.
While holding the skin run your filet knife across between the skin, and the meat.
Lift the meat, and run your filet knife between the cartilage that runs between the top, and bottom wing muscles untill the meat is freed.
I figured I would throw in a shot of the shore line where the 103lb ray come from. The rays will hang at those channels you see there. They were dug to allow minnows to get into the ponds that form in the marshes to make it hard for misquitos to lay their eggs. It make too much current, and the minnows go in and eat the larva. I shot my 5’6″ shark at one of those cuts as well. I actually killed my 110lb ray when she was up in a cove about 3″ deep. she was almost completely out of the water. I always pat alot more attention at those channels, and small coves. We kick up a ray at 90% of them.
Cownose are completely different. You will never see one up close like that. They are always on oyster beds, clam beds and most of all grass beds. You will see these signs telling you not to anchor that have SAV on there. It stands for Submerged Aquatic Vegitation. They love those areas to get the blue crabs out of there.