Mantarays are the largest Ray in the Ocean and are commonly spotted around the Whitsundays. They are absolutely magnificent to watch as they swim gracefully through the water. They are extremely curious of scuba divers and will often swim around divers in many of the Whitsunday Islands. They will also sometimes surface near boats when they are moored. Manta ray are the only species of ray without a stinging barb, they are totally harmless and feed on plankton (filter feeders) in the water.
They are usually black or brown on top and mostly white underneath; they can grow up to 8m across. But usually around the Whitsundays will not reach more than 5m across.
Mantarays are a not to be a forgotten experience for any scuba diver or snorkeler who is fortunate enough to see one while under water around the Whitsundays. Unfortunately for these magnificent kings of the oceans, they are also hunted for their gills, Favoured by a very few for their supposed healing properties.Modern medicine has confirmed that they have absolutely no effect on any claimed healing powers. Hopefully for such a magnificent animal they will be allowed to live in the oceans in peace. An encounter with a manataray is truly a day to remember.