Manta Ray Research Programme

 

The team at Barefoot Conservation have teamed up with the Aquatic Alliance Aquatic Alliance to begin a manta monitoring program in Raja Ampat and Bali. Volunteers joining a Barefoot expedition are highly unlikely not to see manta rays while diving in the area. A common cleaning station for Manta Rays is a short boat trip away, dubbed “Manta Sandy” this is one of the observation sites for the monitoring program.

Volunteers wishing to participate in the program are trained to recognize key characteristics, markings and behaviors of the gentle giants as well as their ecology, biology and conservation. Mantas are commonly sighted while out on other dives and have even been know to sneak up on unsuspecting project scientists! The manta in the picture below was estimated to have a wing span of 4 to 5 meters and kept volunteers and staff company on their safety stop on a Saturday fun dive at “Blue Magic” (not bad company!)

Manta Ray at Blue Magic dive site