I take it the tail/barb didn't get you.
Do the "stingray shuffle" and don't spend a lot of time wading out...or in. (Seems "in" and "out" are sometimes used interchangeably.)
I landed on a large ray or skate last summer when hopping off my board on the way in (to get out of the water). Startled the heck out of me. Then I just felt lucky its tail hadn't gotten me.
Certain times of the year or season may be worse - from a human perspective - than others. I assume that would be when it's warmer, breeding time, or there's a large food supply in the area. I need to become more familiar with their habits.
Sting rays have a barb on the end of their tail. Skates have 3 pronged sharp barbs in lines all over their entire body. Ask any fisherman about their first encounter with a skate. Everybody has gotten stabbed trying to handle them atleast once. There really is no proper way to handle them(that isn't harmful to the fish).
I don't understand WHY they don't sting people more often. Can someone tell me? My cousin stepped on one of them, ray or skate, I don't know, it scared the pee out of him. He's still so eager to get out now...