a discovery of a rare manta ray nursery could help scientists protect the species from any possible extinction in the future. the nursery was found among a coral reef off the coast of texas.
as reported by national geographic, marine biologist josh stewart was floating underwater when he discovered a juvenile manta ray. stewart’s analysis of the species was easy due to the fact that most mature manta ray’s can be as wide across as a giraffe is tall.
photo by julia wimmerlin
the article states that when stewart presented his findings to researchers they were unfazed, having seen young manta rays in the area for years. it was only when stewart took it upon himself to look through 25 years of diving data from the site that his discovery was confirmed. today a study published in marine biology outlines stewart’s discovery as a safe space for young rays to grow and develop, something that could help marine biologists protect the species.
‘it’s really important for us to know where these nursery sites are,‘ says andrea marshall, a ray expert at the mozambique-based marine megafauana foundation and a national geographic explorer. ‘anywhere that has tiny mantas is really important for us to learn about, so we can target our protection strategies.’
ocean awareness and activism (48 articles)
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