Conservation through Research, Awareness and Education

UK Registered Charity Number: 1145387

Dawn Raids, Avian Stowaways & Incredible Manta Encounters!

With the second half of the Baa Atoll manta season well underway, our friends and colleagues down in Laamu have been equally busy with the MMRP’s latest project. In this blog, we catch up with Beth Taylor, Project Manager for the MMRP’s Laamu Manta Project, on recent goings-on down in one of the most southern Maldivian atolls.

When Life Gives You Lemons…Hold-Out For Mantas!

Back in July, James Leyland, a chemistry student from the UK,  joined the Maldivian Manta Project to cover for another member of the Manta Team that sadly had to leave us earlier than planned. Whilst James could only join the team for a month, he gained a number of exciting manta-filled memories to take back home – despite a variety of challenges that seemed to conspire against him! In this week’s blog, James discusses his time in the Maldives and his journey to see his first manta rays. 

Night Time Ballet – Maldivian Manta Expedition (Sept 2014)

We’ve just arrived home from another Manta Expedition around the Maldives. In this week’s blog, Annie Murray, Research Officer for the Maldivian Manta Ray Project, discusses some of the highlights of the week long adventure; including the best dive of her life and why this expedition was even ‘Luckier’ than the last!  

Until We Meet Again

As we enter the second half of our Maldivian manta season and welcome a new group of volunteers, we first say farewell to this year’s Masters student, Tam Sawers. In this week’s blog, Tam reflects on her final days in Baa Atoll, the results of her project and the memories she will take home from her Maldivian adventure! The day starts off as any typical ‘manta research’ day – food is collected (brownies; check!), the cooler box is filled with as many cold drinks as we can carry.

Recipe for Happiness! – Maldivian Manta Expedition (Aug 2014)

We’ve just returned from the first of a series of Manta Expeditions travelling across the Maldives over the next few weeks and blimey, what a trip it was! As our Head of Conservation Strategy, Isabel Ender, describes below, the combination of the right people, the right place and the right time (and a dash of luck!) resulted in some truly incredible experiences! 

Final Days in Paradise

Time has flown by! We’re approaching the half-way point for our Maldivian manta season. In this week’s blog, volunteer Matt Bidault discusses his final adventures in North Malé atoll before he leaves paradise!  My days of freediving in remote Hanifaru Bay seem like a distant dream.

Swapping Corals for Mantas

We have recently started a fantastic new manta project down in Laamu Atoll in conjunction with Six Senses Laamu resort. In this week’s blog, Beth Taylor, the Project Manager for this new southern venture, gives us an insight into her time in Laamu so far.  The journey to start my new position with The Manta Trust was long, tiring, involved leaving the country for a ‘day trip to Sri Lanka’, being interrogated by customs and involved becoming a resident of Malé  Airport for a few nights.

Living a Marine Biologists’ Dream

Local fishermen hold a huge bounty of historical data about various marine species. Whilst the Maldivian Manta Ray Project (MMRP) has been collecting data for nearly 10 years, there is very little information about the manta ray population prior to 2005. Tam Sawers, a Masters student from the University of York, is hoping to address this huge gap, by using interviews and surveys to tap into this local knowledge. In this week’s blog, Tam describes her first manta experiences and the initial findings of her project. The warm wind whipped past as we entered the turquoise waters of Hanifaru Bay.

Surf, Sand & Bull Sharks – Kicking it off in Laamu!

This year’s Maldivian manta season marks the beginning of a new addition to our Maldivian Manta Ray Project (MMRP)! In this week’s blog, Moosa Mohammed, Assistant Project Manager for the MMRP, discusses some of the epic things that have been going on with our new project down south in Laamu Atoll. I was asleep when I got the call from Niv (our project manager), but after seeing his name on my phone my eyes widened and I jumped out of bed.

Experiencing Negombo

Whilst our Maldivian team continue to study the nation’s protected manta rays, our Genetics Project Leader, Emily Humble, shares her first experience of Negombo market in Sri Lanka – host to one of the world’s largest mobulid fisheries. It is the early hours of the morning and a mild smell of fish taints the warm, still air.

© 2014 Manta Trust