The Amazing Flight of Little Ray
February 2018 by V. R. Duin

FLYING STINGRAYS

Little Ray was tired of lazing in pools,
Watching fellow fish in herd-like schools.
The blue sky looked so clear and bright.
Little Ray wanted to join the birds in flight.
(“The Amazing Flight of Little Ray”)

“The Amazing Flight of Little Ray”, from a series of short moral stories for children about flying stingrays, helps establish patterns of goal setting and practice to achieve lofty goals.

According to bustle.com, a recent Harris Poll reveals only 36% of Americans believe in UFOs. Little Ray wants everyone to believe in Identified Flying Stingrays. Taking a leap out of the water is common among fish, including those in fish ponds, fish bowls or aquariums. As shown in “The Amazing Flight of Little Ray”, most fish can jump out of the water and hurl themselves through the air. Rarely is such flight made as a group activity. Although they may swim as a group during migrations, stingrays tend to travel alone. However, solitary stingrays take flight often enough to have earned the name “flying rays”.

Flying fish can glide for hundreds of feet over the water surface. Because of the length of their flight path, a group of flying fish is often called a glide. It is faster and more energy saving for fish to move through air than through water. However, they rarely are in control of their flight motion. As a result, flying fish of every species occasionally make crash landings onto boat decks. Sometimes, they smack into boats and other obstacles, including people. Collisions with large fish in flight can be damaging, even fatal. This lack of flight control becomes a problem for the flying stingray in “The Amazing Flight of Little Ray”, the first book in his series of short moral stories for children.

Shortly after moving to Florida, V. R. Duin watched a flying stingray soar through the air and splash back into the water. That amazing little stingray achieved a height of about five feet above the water. It is not uncommon for flying stingrays to achieve heights of about twice that of the fish that gave V. R. Duin her first sighting. That flying stingray inspired “The Amazing Flight of Little Ray”, the first book in a series of short moral stories for children about stingrays, sharks and other seafaring animals.

Perhaps flying stingrays cannot yet soar as high as birds. They may not have the same incentive or the acute vision of their shark cousins that feed on birds captured in flight. Stingrays eat smaller prey. Stingrays also may not glide the distance of other flying fish or soar at the height of birds in flight. However, there is no reason why they should not try to better themselves, improve their living conditions and, perhaps, their communications. “The Amazing Flight of Little Ray” can teach children a lot about goal setting and practicing to achieve their most lofty of goals. Little Ray's efforts and experience make it clear that children do not need wings to soar to great, new height.

Many creatures do not use wings to fly. Stingrays take flight with fins that look like wings. Much as Little Ray makes use of fins to fly in “The Amazing Flight of Little Ray”, other animals can soar great distances using other flight apparatuses, such as skin flaps. Among these are mammals like flying squirrels, reptiles like flying geckos, amphibians like flying frogs and arthropods like ballooning spiders. Like birds and insects, ballooning spiders can catch an updraft or an electric field that lifts them into oncoming airplane windshields. Oceanic squid are mollusks that can shoot a jet of water to rocket into the air for short distances.

“The Amazing Flight of Little Ray” is about a determined young stingray's repeated efforts to become the first of flying stingrays with full flight control. With his Mama Ray watching and, thanks to a little help from above and the encouragement of cheering fans from shore, Little Ray beats all odds. He takes an amazing flight that will keep folks talking for generations. It's not every day that a young stingray decides to fly like a bird. In his short moral stories for children, Little Ray proves that nobody needs wings to beat all challenges and exceed all limits. Goal setting, practice and perseverance are the tickets to success.

Leaping into the air can help flying stingrays evade capture by bigger fish or other predators in the water. These amazing flights may afford temporary relief from something about the water that is not quite right, such as the temperature or the level and type of contaminants. When under stress and before taking flight, stingrays and their shark relatives may vomit to discharge their stomach contents and lighten their load. Taking flight also may rid fish of parasites that fall back into their natural home.

These amazing flights by flying stingrays may be sudden or they may follow preflight preparations or practice sessions, like in “The Amazing Flight of Little Ray”. In the first book in his series of short moral stories for children, Little Ray makes a lot of false starts before he manages to take to the air. His strong will and singular focus may help children establish the patterns of goal setting and practice that can enable them to achieve lofty goals. Rare is the goal that takes no disciplined efforts or struggles against unforeseen setbacks to accomplish.

A fish may take amazing flight for visual orientation or for navigation around obstacles. The view from above may help fish map their migration routes. In “The Amazing Flight of Little Ray”, from a series of short moral stories for children, it is clear that flying stingrays can see in the air and in the water. Granted, stingrays do not have the sharpest of vision among aquatic animals. However, the view of any fish from the air is limited. Since few fish can breathe while they are in the air, a return to the water is hastened.

Readers of “The Amazing Flight of Little Ray” know Little Ray's experience in the air is not one of comfort. While fish are out of the water, their gills collapse. Water is critical to the survival of these aquatic animals. However, jumping briefly out of the water can be useful and entertaining to fish. Flying stingrays may soar into the air for pure enjoyment. Their flying leaps may be a form of communication. Perhaps, they are even showing off. Like their stingray cousins, sharks often hurl themselves through the air, but the reasons may be different.

Whether they are leaping through the air like Little Ray in “The Amazing Flight of Little Ray”, or racing along in the water, flying sharks can catch flying stingrays. Unlike stingrays, sharks hunt easily and keenly while they are airborne. Although they are relatives, sharks and stingrays are not natural friends. It is a good thing that Little Ray gets along with the shark that co-stars in “Little Ray & Shark Patch Things Up”, the second seafaring adventure in Little Ray's series of short moral stories for children.

Two of the books in Little Ray's children's book series use the riveting action of swimming and flying stingrays to create a sense of adventure. Sharks and armadillos inject new insights into these short moral stories with lessons inspired from the wild. Get children buzzing about fun animal facts and amazing flight possibilities. In “Little Ray & Shark Patch Things Up”, children also experience the power of teamwork over the cowardly tactics of bullying. There will be no more running away, when heroic collaboration is needed.

In “The Amazing Flight of Little Ray”, while using his mighty “wings” to propel above water and into the sky, this flying stingray meets with misadventure in the air. As comes naturally, Little Ray uses his bravery and cunning to make a safe return to his home at sea. To inspire the children watching him, Little Ray will continue his efforts to exceed all bounds. Along the way, and guided by the examples set in “The Foxy Armadillos”, Little Ray is certain to make new discoveries and collect interesting, new friends.

Someday, this flying stingray may make an amazing flight that becomes newsworthy. He might even impress a mate with his commanding flights. Little Ray may have his head in the clouds, but his dreams are not totally impractical. With a little help from friends, Little Ray certainly beat all expectations for his amazing flight. Despite his mishaps along the way, Little Ray is practicing hard to break the record he set for flying stingrays in “The Amazing Flight of Little Ray”. For now, let's just be glad that Little Ray still can practice his flying leaps.

While governments look for UFOs, Little Ray puts on real flying shows. This little stingray takes to the air, again and again, to motivate children to reach for high goals. An albatross travels at great speed and can glide around the world without landing and without constantly flapping its wings. Little Ray hopes to catch an updraft and a stream of wind that will enable him to continuously exceed the bounds of the world's greatest of flying stingrays. There is something “electric” about his goals.

Is there any reason why flying stingrays or determined children cannot glide around the world like albatrosses? “The Amazing Flight of Little Ray” is from a series of short moral stories about flying stingrays and other inspirational critters from land and sea. People have been known to borrow ideas from nature to improve products for everyday living. Little Ray believes his short moral stories for children can motivate anyone to make amazing flights, achieve new heights and reel in new successes at school, at work and in the community.

Flying Comments

  • Flying Stingrays admin says:

    Sharks leaping into the air and slapping the water upon return to the sea can be scarier to people than flying stingrays.

  • Amazing Flight admin says:

    Mama Ray allowed Little Ray to prepare for a better future with the skills, habits and confidence earned in “The Amazing Flight of Little Ray”.

    • short moral stories for childrenadmin says:

      In Little Ray's short moral stories for children, it takes a luck, ingenuity, and help from others to soar to great height.