Mobula rays are the ultimate scene stealers. They astound spectators with their incredible acrobatic stunts when they leap out of the water. No wonder Mobula rays are sometimes referred to as flying rays. These creatures can launch themselves six feet above the ocean’s surface. Mobula rays jump, spin, and perform a belly flop before returning back into the water with a big splash. The impact resonates with a huge boom in the water. The higher the jump, the bigger the water splurge. With such prowess, they deserve nothing less than a standing ovation from the audience.
What’s more fascinating about this spectacle is that Mobula Rays perform this breathtaking stunt in huge numbers. It’s like they are putting on a nature show for anyone who is willing to watch.
Scientists are still trying to unravel the mystery behind the acrobatic leaps. There are theories that Mobula rays jump to impress a potential mate or eject parasites from their bodies. Some say that they jump as a form of communication. Whatever the real reason is, this incredible display is a sight to behold.
Fact about Mobula rays
Mobula rays belong to the family Mobulidae and they are closely related to sharks. There are nine species of Mobula rays and they all have acrobatic skills. They have diamond-shaped bodies and long fins that enable them to effortlessly glide in the water – as well as through the air. Their fins that appear like wings can extend up to 17 feet. These filter feeders are found in both tropical and temperate waters.
We already established earlier that Mobula Rays are excellent acrobats. They flap their pectoral fins in the air with elaborate precision that will awe onlookers. Mobula rays are amazing swimmers as well. They move their majestic fins and steer with immaculate grace through the water. Even Mobula pups are magnificent underwater gliders. They are born with curled fins which they unfold before taking off to swim for the first time.
Largest schools of rays in Mexico
Shoals of Mobulas often gather together in huge numbers especially off the coast of Mexico. Every year, tens of thousands of Mobula rays grace the waters of Baja California. This incredible congregation is a spectacular natural phenomenon that many people look forward to annually.
If you want to experience this yearly underwater extravaganza, you can join Baja Shark Experience’s Mobula Rays Snorkeling & Freediving Experience. Our trip brings you up close and personal with Mobula rays particularly the Munk’s Devil Rays. This mind-blowing show is perfect for underwater enthusiasts, nature lovers, and wildlife photographers. It’s an amazing opportunity to capture these amazing creatures in and out of the water.
Sadly, Mobula rays are fished commercially in different countries including Mexico. The population of rays suffered a huge decline in the Gulf of California, off Mexico in the 1980s. This was a time when fishermen began targeting these poor creatures. The pressures of commercial fishing and the low reproductive rate have brought the number of Mobula Rays down putting them in the VULNERABLE category in the IUCN red list.
Baja Shark Experience is passionate about taking care of the marine environment and its underwater dwellers. We promote eco-friendly trips to teach people about the importance of marine life and how to help take care of them. Join any of our trips and enjoy incredible marine life interactions.