Black Manta Rays in Raja Ampat, Papua, Indonesia


I can never get enough of them! They always make me happy every time I see them (of course, who wouldn’t?!!). They’re so elegant, calm and beautiful!

Very little facts known about manta rays. What I know, it is the largest species of the rays. The size can be up to 7 meters across! I think I’ve seen mantas of 4-5 meters. Yes, they’re big! They can weigh about 2,300 kilograms!

What do they eat? Mantas eat plankton. So, they won’t bite you 😉 hehehe…

I’ve seen manta rays quite often in their cleaning stations. Cleaning stations? Yes, it’s a place where small fish swim in the manta’s gills and over its skin to feed. These small fish serves as a beautician, cleaning parasites living on mantas’ skins as well as cleaning dead tissue.

Mantas are often curious of divers. And that’s why I love them, because they can get so close to me! So damn close until I could even touch them! But of course, I didn’t! NEVER EVER TOUCH MANTA RAYS or any living things you see underwater! Have some respect of their habitat, please!

In the dives I did in Raja Ampat, Papua, I encountered several manta rays. And on one dive, there were 2 black mantas swimming around in pair. So cool! Check out the video that I recorded for you:

As you can see, someone tried to touch the black manta!!! I got sooooo pissed off with my friend who attempted to touch the manta. As soon as we went up to the surface, I yelled at him. “Why did you touch the mantas???!!! It’s so uncool!!! You should have not done it!”

It really pisses me off to see scuba-divers that have no respect whatsoever to the animals and living inhabitants underwater. Divers should know that if we touch manta rays, for example, it would hurt them. Touching mantas will remove some of the mucus coating that protects them from infection.

So, divers, please… have some respects to the fish and everything we see underwater! We go to their habitat, so we should respect and leave them alone. Don’t take anything, don’t touch anything…. all we can do is enjoying their beauty and helping the nature to preserve it.

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