The Manta Trust works closely with a number of partners to facilitate its conservation, research and educational aims. These partnerships facilitate collaboration on research projects and information sharing, they drive conservation initiatives through increased public awareness, attract and provide financial support, and provide an outlet for academic publications. The Manta Trust is therefore extremely grateful to its partners for their support, without whom many of the trust’s achievements to date would not have been possible.
Four Seasons Resorts, Maldives have supported The Manta Trust since the inception of the Maldivian Manta Ray Project in 2005. Working alongside the Four Seasons and their guests the Maldivian Manta Ray Project has been able to share the experience of snorkeling with mantas with thousands of guests as well as providing educational talks and activities. The Four Seasons Resort at Landaa Giraavaru is the base for the Manta Trust’s work in the Maldives and during the key manta season the resort is home to the staff and volunteers as they go about their research.
Four Seasons Resorts, Maldives are committed to sustainable tourism practices and have been instrumental in the recent designation of Baa Atoll as a UNESCO World Biosphere Reserve which features some of the key study sites of the Maldivian Manta Ray Project as core protected areas.
Six Senses, Laamu is one of the Manta Trusts’ longest partnerships in the Maldives. Fully committed to the environment and developing sustainable, marine-related guest activities, Six Senses has contributed to the Manta Trusts’ research in the Maldives since 2012. The Six Senses now aims to extend it’s conservation opportunities to it’s guests by partnering with the Manta Trust.
Located close to one of the most famous manta feeding channels, Barefoot Island boasts one of the best opportunities to swim with manta rays. The resort has been instrumental in aiding the research and conservation work being carried out by the regional Manta Trust programme.
Misool Resort’s Conservation Centre is a registered Indonesian charity called Misool Baseftin. Misool’s approach to conservation is broad, ranging from reef restoration projects with the resort’s Rangers, building kindergartens in local villages, and steering legislation on the new Raja Ampat Shark and Manta Sanctuary Misool helped to create along with Shark Savers in October 2010.
In August 2011, members of the Misool team beginning sifting and collating several years’ worth of photos and videos from the nearby manta ray dive sites. Using the distinctive markings on the manta’s belly, they have identified individuals and created a database with the help of The Manta Trust. This contributes valuable data to the global knowledge of manta migration patterns and behaviour. The photo ID data is also used to document interactions between the two different species of mantas which frequent the local sites, follow breeding patterns, and note seasonal migrations.
Hurawalhi Resort is The Manta Trust’s newest partnership in the Maldives. Situated in Lhaviyani Atoll, a prime destination for manta ray sightings, Hurawalhi resort together with Pro Divers has launched a new programme of interest which incorporates our team of specialists at The Manta Trust. This is the first of its kind within the atoll and is aimed at developing our knowledge of the manta ray population in this area as well as encouraging further understanding into the wider realm of marine fauna located in this Atoll. The partnership is also aimed at improving relations with the local community and is geared to educate the guests on conservation and eco-friendly activities practiced both locally and internationally and the protocols that need to be implemented to ensure the protection and preservation of these natural resources. We are enthusiastic about this newest association and look forward to the new discoveries that lie ahead.
Diamonds Thudufushi and Diamonds Athuruga are sister resorts uniquely situated in the heart of the tourism industry in the Maldives. As keen supporters of conservation initiatives and with a drive to protect the majestic manta ray, this partnership began with Diamonds Thudufushi Maldives becoming home to the first Manta Trust project in Ari Atoll, and has now proudly grown to include the new addition of Diamonds Athuruga Maldives.
By working in close association, the two projects aim to deliver a wealth of conservation minded activities which focus on educating the general public about manta rays and the importance of protecting their habitat. As a tourism central point the team are also geared towards ensuring effective eco-tourism rules and regulations are adhered to and to communicate these practices on a regional level amongst local resorts dive companies and liveaboards and internationally through guest interaction and education.
Founded on principles of excellence, equality and opportunity for all, the University of York (UK) opened in 1963 with just 230 students. In less than 50 years, York has become one of the top ten universities in the UK for teaching and research – and is ranked in the top 100 universities in the world. There are now over 30 academic departments and research centres and the student body has expanded to 13,000.
The Scripps Institution of Oceanography’s mission is to seek, teach, and communicate scientific understanding of the oceans, atmosphere, Earth, and other planets for the benefit of society and the environment. Originally founded in 1903 by members of the Scripps family and community members, the Scripps Institution for Biological Research joined the University of California in 1912. Today the Institution lead hundreds of research programs involving all aspect of scientific study across the globe.
Linnaeus University has a clear vision – “an attractive international learning environment promoting curiosity, creativity, companionship and utility.” Formed in 2010 when the University of Kalmar and Växjö University merged, Linnaeus University is one of Sweden’s most modern institutes boasting high quality research programmes, globally spanning various subjects including natural and social sciences, as well as engineering.
The Save Our Seas Foundation (SOSF) is committed to protecting our oceans by funding research, education, awareness and conservation projects focusing on the major threats to the marine environment.
From a small not-for-profit organisation funding just five projects, in less than 10 years, SOSF has grown to become a major player in the fight to save the world’s oceans and the wealth of marine life they contain. During that time the SOSF has provided financial and, equally important, practical assistance to over 150 marine research and conservation projects spread around the world.
The “Manta Ray of Hope” documentary takes the viewer on a breathtaking journey to some of the most remote and exotic places on earth, to personally experience the magnificence of these rays. Through the eyes of naturalists and researchers, the people who know these animals best, we begin to unravel the mysteries of the manta. We experience their joy of new discoveries and also their pain, watching mantas they know fished in front of their very eyes.
We then go deep undercover, from the remote fishing villages to the bustling cities, to better understand and expose the trade that is threatening their very future. And, we challenge the medicinal health ‘claims’ that are driving this destructive trade. Finally, as a ray of hope, we meet those who are making a difference, from scientists, to politicians, to local businessmen, and learn how we all can make a difference for these magical creatures.
WildAid’s mission is to reduce consumer demand for endangered wildlife products and to encourage responsible energy consumption behavior. We do this through global public awareness campaigns, field conservation programs and enforcement of marine protected areas. WildAid is a non-profit 501(c )3 organisation headquartered in San Francisco with representation in China, India, Galapagos, London and Canada.
Shark Savers is a non-profit organization that campaigns to curb demand for shark fin soup, create safe havens and advocates for sharks, mantas, and mobulas. Shark Savers leverages the power of the diving and conservation communities to save these animals so that they may continue their 400 million year contribution toward the healthy balance of ocean ecosystems.
Mission Blue is a global initiative of the Sylvia Earle Alliance, which was formed in response to Sylvia Earle’s 2009 TED Prize wish. Dr. Earle urged people to “use all means at your disposal – films, expeditions, the web, new submarines – to create a campaign to ignite public support for a global network of marine protected areas; Hope Spots large enough to save and restore the blue heart of the planet.”
Currently the Mission Blue community includes 60+ respected ocean conservation groups and like minded organisations – from large multinational companies down to individual scientific teams doing important research.
Mission-Blue.org is an ocean community hub that seeks to make good on Sylvia’s wish by elevating public awareness about critical ocean issues and inspiring support for organisations, projects and scientific expeditions that make a positive difference for the ocean.
To educate: With world-class ocean outreach activities WiseOceans is uniquely placed to inspire interest and excitement in the oceans, leading to an increased desire to protect them, and ultimately to healthier seas.
To conserve: WiseOceans innovative restoration projects make a real difference to the conservation of the oceans. Coral nurseries, mangrove restoration and scientific research projects are all tailor-made to have a positive impact on their environment.
To involve: Through an extensive website WiseOceans provides a wealth of information including a section dedicated to marine conservation work opportunities helping guide those wishing to work within the marine conservation field. Additionally the success of the Marine Discovery Programmes in luxury resorts where WiseOceans Marine Educators share their passion for the oceans and help guests and staff to feel the same, proves WiseOceans’ expertise in getting people into and in love with the sea.
Established in 1997, the Shark Trust is the UK registered charity which works to advance the worldwide conservation of sharks through science, education, influence and action. Our vision is a world where sharks thrive within a globally healthy marine ecosystem.
The Trust is an effective and well respected advocate for sound shark management and protection; a founder member of the Shark Alliance; the Secretariat of the European Elasmobranch Association; and a membership organisation which provides a link between the public and the science community.
Established in 1997, and based in Kota Kinabalu on the island of Borneo, Scubazoo’s award winning team has a wealth of underwater imaging experience. Their scope of work has ranged over a broad spectrum of different projects including filming for productions broadcast on channels such as National geographic, Discovery, Animal Planet, ITV and notably filming on landmark productions such as the BBC’s LIFE, Human Planet and Wonders of Life. Their publications department has produced coffee table books such as Reef, Maldives – the Underwater Kingdom and Sabah’s Underwater Treasure, while their images have appeared in magazine articles, books, posters, brochures and advertising campaigns all over the world.
Scubazoo are committed to helping the environment by building awareness of the threats to our oceans and marine life. Through their dramatic, inspirational, and sometimes disturbing images they hope that people will come to care more about our planet and think about the consequences of their action or inaction.
Longitude 181 NATURE is an association founded by François Sarano and Vincent Ohl in 2002. Its Honorary President is Albert Falco, former head diver and captain of the Calypso.
The goal of the association is to discover nature, to meet people and their traditions. It wants to show the extraordinary cultural and biological diversity of the world, so that tomorrow everyone can enjoy the treasures of our planet in a fair and sustainable way.
The association’s philosophy and actions take root in an incredible hands on experience : over 40 years of travelling, meeting people and exploring the globe.