Take a unique opportunity to dive with manta rays to build a database about individual rays, their behavior, and their conservation needs.
The manta ray is the world's largest ray, with a disk width of up to 23 feet (seven meters). As a harmless giant, it attracts considerable interest from the public and is the subject of commercial diving tours that bring in millions of dollars.
Manta rays are also hunted by fisheries. Recent demand in eastern Asia for manta ray products poses an immediate threat to the species and has caused significant population declines. The manta ray is now classified as vulnerable in the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species and is not currently protected in
As a volunteer, you’ll take and process photos of manta rays in order to identify individual fish. You’ll also contribute to a study of manta feeding habits, assist with plankton sampling and analysis, and help film rays for an ongoing behavioral study.
The information you gather will go into a database that will help significantly improve species and habitat management plans. Government agencies, conservation groups, and commercial tour operators will turn to Project Manta and the work you do to determine how best to protect threatened manta populations and to promote sustainable ecotourism as an alternative to hunting.
Note: To be eligible for this project, participants must complete and pass a commercial dive medical assessment performed by a SPUMS doctor prior to the beginning of the project. Visit SPUMS website to locate a doctor. The cost of the assessment ranges between AUD$200-AUD$300. For further information, please contact us.