Manta Rays Night dive is a common practice done by many professionals as well as beginners due to their interest. Divers dive in the night time with all of their required equipment to view the dramatic underwater world in the dark. Night dive can be of various types but manta rays night dive, as the name indicates, is quite intriguing.
You can consider manta rays as a different or a supertype of fishes. Manta rays are large rays that have enormous widths as well as have massive weights. Their dimensions range from 5.5 m (18 ft) to 7m (23 ft). M. birostris being the largest species of the lot and M. alfredi being the smallest one. The manta rays have triangular pectoral fins, horn-shaped cephalic fins, and large forward-facing mouths.
They have been classified scientifically as well. Their scientific classification is as follows.
It is termed as manta rays night dive only because divers dive specifically on those places where they have a chance of interacting with the manta rays. The rest of the phenomenon of night diving is the same except for the environment.
Where Manta Rays can be found?
Manta rays can be found in warm temperature, subtropical as well as tropical waters, and more specifically they are found in open oceans.
Giant Manta Rays:
The giant manta rays are the largest rays present in the world with a width as high as 8.8 m (29 ft) and their weight can be up to 5300 pounds (2404 kg). But these types of rays aren’t that common and can be found in some specific conditions. Among this type, giant oceanic manta rays or the oceanic manta rays are also the largest types of manta rays. And these largest types can have an age span of more than 20 years.
Touching a Manta Ray during a Night Dive:
If you are having a night dive and suddenly you come in contact with the manta rays, we recommend you not to touch them. The main reason behind this isn’t that they would bite you or do anything else to your body, rather they lose a protective layer around their body and can cause serious damages to your body.
Some divers in the past tried to do so, but as a result of losing the protective layer of mucous, the divers faced harmful diseases and other problems due to parasites.
Dangers of swimming with Manta Rays:
Manta rays don’t impose any dangers if you opt to swim along with them. They are pretty harmless and don’t hurt any diver at all, rather they are also amazed to dive deep and swim with the divers. All you to do is not to touch them. Except for this, they are safe to swim with.
Attracting Manta Rays during a Night Dive:
If you are on a boat in the waters and want to attract manta rays, you can put the lights at the bottom of the boat or simply you can hang the lights with your boat. If Manta rays are there in that portion of water, they will surely get attracted towards the direction of your light and you can have a closer look at them.
In case you aren’t on the boat and are diving normally like an ordinary diver and want to attract the manta rays, you should try using your portable water-resistant torch. When you turn on your torch, manta rays will get attracted towards the beams of the torch.
Can a Manta Ray kill a human?
It’s nothing more than just a myth that a manta ray can kill humans by diving near them. Manta rays themselves feel happy whenever they get a chance to swim around the humans. They are safe to swim with until or unless you try to touch them.
Friendly Nature of Manta Rays:
Manta rays are pretty friendly towards human beings during a night dive but still, they are hesitant while approaching the humans because they are somehow a lot more sensitive and can get their protective layers destroyed whenever any human being tries to touch them.
This is the reason they are not found everywhere. But if you are an adventurer and want to have a night dive with manta rays especially those who are friendly, at all costs, we recommend you to visit the Revillagigedo Islands. This is because, on these islands, people have been diving for the last 30 years with manta rays without harming them. That’s why these islands are now considered to have the friendliest manta rays.
Also, if you can find any such island where dive tourism is rare, then, most probably, the manta rays found there would be friendly because they don’t have the understanding of the bad behavior of the humans.
Best Places for Manta Rays Night Dive:
Many islands offer manta rays night dive but some of them are considered best because of the variety of manta rays present. And not only the variety in species of manta rays but their friendly nature as well. After exploring different islands that offer manta rays night dive, we have selected a few islands as the best. These are the Socorro Island, Kona Island, Hawaii Island, and some other islands of Thailand, Indonesia, Australia, etc.
Depth of Manta Rays Night Dive:
Manta rays night dive’s depth varies from place to place, but on average, manta rays can be found while diving at a depth of almost 35 feet if the water temperatures are between 75 to 79 degrees Fahrenheit.
If you want to have an experience of diving along with manta rays, make sure to choose the night dive. Along with night dive, take proper equipment and most importantly a torch will high beams to attract the manta rays towards you.
And diving at appropriate depth is as important to see manta rays as important your oxygen cylinder is for diving deep into the water.