About 20 people gathered at the Assiniboine Park Zoo Saturday to protest the reopening of the Stingray Beach exhibit.

Animal rights activists are calling for the permanent closure of the exhibit.

The exhibit had been open for just over a month when the zoo announced three stingrays died and another three were injured because of natural -- yet aggressive mating behaviour, and closed the interactive exhibit temporarily.

READ MORE: Aggressive mating leads to animal deaths, injuries at Stingray Beach exhibit

The Zoo said Stingray Beach reopened on Tuesday at the recommendation of its animal care team.

“We were pretty shocked to hear that they opened the exhibit again, just a couple of days ago. Even after the Winnipeg Humane Society requested them to keep it closed down. And we got over 1,000 signatures in our petition to keep the exhibit to be closed," said Harry Singh from Manitoba Animal Save.

The zoo said water temperature has been reduced, and window coverings have been added to help shift the stingrays out of mating season.

It said the males and females have also been separated in the meantime, and the stingrays are doing