MANTA RAY

(Giant Manta or Manta birostris

and Reef manta or Manta alfredi)

 

 

MANTA RAY (Giant Manta or Manta birostris and Reef Manta or Manta alfredi)

 

In 2009, the genus Manta was split into two species thanks to Dr. Andrea Marshall who identified a new species of Manta off Tofo: the Reef Manta (Manta alfredi). She is the founder of the Marine Megafauna Foundation, a non-profit charitable organization based in Tofo that focuses on the research and conservation of threatened large marine species, and the first woman in the world to do a PhD on Manta Rays! 

Tofo is one of the very few spots in the world where you can  see  both  the  Giant  Manta

(Manta birostris) and the Reef Manta in the same dive site! They  are  seen  around  Tofo

all year round and they generally average 5 meters disc width. Like the Whale Shark, they

are filter feeders using gill rakers to filter  zooplankton  out  of  the  water  and  they  have

developed  a  number  of  strategies  to  become  true  feeding  machines! These include

surface feeding, bottom feeding, barrel rolling  and  cooperative  feeding.  They  are  also

very reliant on our cleaning  stations  for  the  regular  grooming  from  butterfly  fish  and

cleaner  wrasse.  Each  Manta  has  a  pattern  of  black  spots  on  the white belly that is

unique to each individual, like a ‘fingerprint’. These natural spot patterns  do  not  change

markedly over time and, together with distinctive scars  on  their  body,  can  be  used  by

scientists   reliably  to  identify  individual  Mantas  for  life.  Using  this  technique,  about

750  individual  manta  rays  have  been  specifically  identified   around   Tofo,   with   an

estimated population of 1400 individuals in the area. These are  mostly  seen  at  depths

from 20 to 30 meters over the reefs, but on the Ocean/Bio safaris  there is also a chance

seeing them cruising just a couple of meters below the surface. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

PLEASE NOTE THAT AN ENCOUNTER WITH MANTA RAYS CAN NEVER BE GUARANTEED ON A PARTICULAR OCEAN SAFARI OR DIVEI!! This is what makes the wild so special; every day is just unique!

Species Distribution

Contact Us

Praia do Tofo - Mozambique

  • White Instagram Icon
  • White Twitter Icon
  • White Facebook Icon