blue o two are excited to announce that Nikki Weeden, host of their popular ‘Project Shark: Maldives’ itinerary, has identified not one but two previously unrecorded manta rays in the Maldives.
The Manta Trust confirmed this week, that two out of the eight individuals successfully photographed and identified by Nikki on her latest trip in March this year were not on their records. Cross-referenced with over 3000 mantas on file, the unique markings between the gills (similar to that of a human fingerprint) of the mature and juvenile males did not match their current files.
Nikki was informed of this good news and had the honour of naming the manta rays. They are now known as ‘Pergonia’ and ‘Monkey Face’ and have been added to The Manta Trust’s database, along with biological characteristics, sighting dates, location of the sightings and an official manta ID number.
Nikki commented ‘This is really exciting – especially considering that Pergonia is a mature male. Since he hasn’t yet been recorded in the Maldives, it does make you wonder where he’s been until now! It’s really great that we are able to help the Manta Trust expand their database, and also contribute photos that aid in monitoring the movement patterns of these beautiful animals.’
The six other manta rays recorded also offered some exciting findings, from not having been sighted since 2010 to learning more about their migration patterns between Baa and Ari Atolls.
For more information about Project Shark and how you can get involved visit the blue o two website www.blueotwo.com, contact the expert blue o two travel team on +44 (0)1752 480808