Manta Trust visits Blue Season Bali
Here in Bali we are lucky to be able to dive with Manta Rays all year round. It is rare that we go a day in Nusa Penida without spotting at least one of these majestic creatures. Unfortunately, Manta Rays face the same threat as sharks, being fished and poached not for their fins, but for their gill rakers (used to filter the plankton they eat out of the water column) which are used in Chinese medicine. Recently, Sarah Lewis from Manta Trust came to Blue Season Bali to deliver a talk to our Divemaster interns about Mantas in our area and conservation efforts in place around Bali, Indonesia and S.E Asia.
Currently Manta Trust projects around Bali and Lombok are photographing and cataloguing all the Mantas who visit the local cleaning stations. Each Manta has a distinctive spot pattern on their belly like a fingerprint which Manta Trust uses to identify and track them throughout the area.
From her talk, the interns learned some very valuable information about identifying Mantas and understanding their behaviours. We also learned how to tell male and female Mantas apart and about the different colour variations of Mantas in the area.
Although Manta Rays were recently added to the protected list at the CITES (Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species) there is still a lot of work to be done (especially in Indonesia) to protect these amazing creatures. Divers can do their part by submitting photos to Manta Trust for identification purposes and diving responsibly with the local Manta population. Simply by diving with Mantas you are helping to protect them by showing the local governments how important they are for tourism in the area.
Blue Season Bali offers Manta dives all year round. It is also possible to snorkel with these gentle giants if you or someone in your family is not a diver. Check out our Manta Madness dive trips and Nusa Penida snorkel tours for more information. Want to take your diving to the next level? Become an Eco Divemaster Intern with us and spend your days diving with,, and learning about, Mantas, Mola Molas and more
Also be sure to check out the Manta Trust website to learn more about the work they are doing here in Bali or you have Manta identification photos you would like to submit.