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6, Dec, 2010

Manta Ray – Manta Birostris

Posted in Fish Finder, Latest News by simon

Manta Ray Facts:

  • Mantas can be huge, growing up to 25 feet in length and weigh as much as 5,000 pounds.
  • Manta Rays are known to engage in the process of migrating.
  • A protective mucus membrane covers a manta ray and can be lost if they are touched by humans.
  • The Manta Ray has the largest brain to body ratio of all sharks and rays on Earth.
  • Manta Rays can live up to 20 years old.
  • A very close relative of the shark. Ironically, sharks as well as whales are their main predators. They are also closely related to the stingray but they don’t have a stinger.
  • Manta rays regularly display amazing aerobatic maneuvers for divers.
  • The Manta Ray is actually classified as a fish. It is also one of the largest and it continues to be one that we know the least about.
  • They don’t have a skeleton that is made from bone but from cartilage.
  • The smallest species of Manta Ray is the Mobula Diabolis only growing to about 2 feet in length.
  • The Manta Ray is only surpassed in size in the marine world by sharks and whales.
  • The open fins of a Manta Ray can be more than 20 feet in length.
  • While the Manta Ray has many rows of sharp teeth, they aren’t used for eating. Instead they have a filtering system.
  • The Manta Ray doesn’t have a nose.
  • The name Manta means blanket in Spanish, and the fact that this creature looks like a blanket as it moves in the water is part of the namesake.
  • The mouth of the Manta Ray is located on the top of the head instead of on the bottom.
  • They are the only jawed vertebrates that also have limbs.
  • Manta Ray - Manta Birostris

    Manta Ray – What are they?

    The manta ray is a large ray in the family Mobulidae and  is the largest species of the rays. The largest known specimen was more than 7.6 metres (25 ft) across, with a weight of about 2,300 kilograms (5,100 lb).

    Manta rays are broader across than they are long, and they have distinctive fins near their faces which resemble horns, which also gives them the name ‘devil rays’. These fins are an ingenious tool which the mantas use to sweep in prey.

    Manta rays are filter feeders, living on plankton. They are very good swimmers, using huge fins, similar to wings to elegantly glide through the water and steer themselves with their whip-like tails. Some species can even jump totally out of the water.

    The manta ray is ovoviviparous, which means that the females incubate their eggs in their bodies. Typically only one manta ray baby hatches at a time, and newborn manta rays are already around four feet wide.

    Although it might be tempting to imagine grabbing on and hitching a ride with these fast swimmers, people should avoid handling manta rays, as they can hurt them or damage the mucus membranes which protect the body from infection.

    Manta rays are located throughout tropical waters of the world, typically around coral reefs which means that many visitors to these regions come into contact with manta rays. The famous Thailand dive sites of Hin Daeng and Hin Muang are considered to be among the top 10 dives sites in the world for spotting manta rays which is why we run 3 trips a week to this amazing site on our luxury cruiser ‘Ja Ru Pat‘.

     

    How to differentiate between the sexes of a Manta Ray:


     


     

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