Stingray Tattoo Design Ideas

Updated on November 1, 2017
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Richard Hale is a tattoo enthusiast who studies and researches tattoo symbolism, meanings, and history.


Just like other animal tattoos, the stingray can hold symbolic meaning to those who have it. It is a popular choice in the Polynesian culture, but not considered to be a mainstream choice.

The most popular stingray designs are done as tribal tattoos. Someone may consider such a tattoo if they feel that they share traits or have a special connection with the stingray.

The stingray is a special creature and is excellent at hunting and outwitting other hunters. It can hide in the underwater sands (mainly from sharks)—it covers up with sand and lays still. Because of its ability to hide, the stingray can be a symbol of cleverness or protection.

As a design, the stingray can adapt to any color, size, or posture. Small ones may have little detail, but when done well, it still can be a stunning design. The bigger the stingray, the better.

Most stingray tattoos portray the stingray alone without a background. Personally, I think blue and black ink look good together along with light shades of blue. That combination really sets the black ink off, so I prefer a little light blue shading.

Tribal Stingray Tattoos

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Stingray Tattoo Meanings

Remember that, in the end, your tattoo represents what you want it to. In saying that, below are the meanings of the stingray tattoo.

  • Emotion
  • Protection
  • Adaptation
  • Cleverness
  • Gracefulness
  • Peacefulness
  • Friendliness
  • Sensitivity
  • Danger
  • Toxicity
  • Agility
  • Speed
  • Stealth

Designs and Variations

  • As you read above, tribal stingrays are one of the most popular options, but they can also be portrayed in a more realistic or cartoonish style.
  • This tattoo could have a background that includes water, turtles, bubbles, starfish, octopus, fish, sharks, dolphins, seaweed, plants, or coral, but the stingray is usually portrayed alone.
  • Stingray tattoos are usually done in black and gray ink, with appropriate shading to make the creature appear three-dimensional.
  • Some may show the stingray using its poisonous barb. I have seen designs that show the stingray piercing a heart, which may be something to consider.
  • Stingrays may also be in the background of a larger tattoo.

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Before Getting Inked

There are a few things that you should remember before getting tattooed. Just as you are now, make sure that you take the time to do your research. Make sure you completely understand what your tattoo represents. Don't rush to get inked! If you are not completely sure, don't get it! If you're having second thoughts, give it more time. Those that rush to get tattooed usually have regrets about their decision later on down the road. You don't want to make this mistake. Take your time, do your research, and make sure you are completely sure about your choice.

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Stingray Tattoo Designs

Would You Consider The Stingray Tattoo

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© 2012 Richard Ricky Hale


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    • profile image

      andres 4 years ago

      manta rays...

    • thelyricwriter profile image

      Richard Ricky Hale 5 years ago from West Virginia

      Thank you all for your comments.

    • rmichaelf profile image

      Michael Fielder 5 years ago from North Central West Virginia, where the green grass grows...

      Another one!

      As a kid, 13, I began diving in the Red Sea when we moved to Jeddah in Saudi Arabia. On one of my first dives, we saw several of these little guys and I was fascinated by them. I've seen them as small as 9 or 10 inches (wingspan) and Manta's with 8 feet! They are pure poetry in motion in the water.



    • Gypsy Rose Lee profile image

      Gypsy Rose Lee 5 years ago from Riga, Latvia

      These are great. Interesting.

    • always exploring profile image

      Ruby Jean Fuller 5 years ago from Southern Illinois

      I like the history you included with the stingray tattoos, Unique and colorful..

    • BeyondMax profile image

      BeyondMax 5 years ago from Sydney, Australia

      They are so gorgeous, simply amazing!

    • unknown spy profile image

      IAmForbidden 5 years ago from Neverland - where children never grow up.

      Amazing stingrays designs. Wonderful and creative

    • K9keystrokes profile image

      India Arnold 5 years ago from Northern, California

      Some of these stingray tattoos are simply amazing to look at. Great information for those looking to add a unique tattoo to their body art!


    • CarlySullens profile image

      CarlySullens 5 years ago from St. Louis, Missouri

      Another wonderful idea for a tattoo. I always love the symbolism you apply in these hubs. It puts you a cut above the rest in regards to tattoo images. Voted up and shared!