Six Senses Laamu, Manta Trust to celebrate first ever World Manta Day

This year marks the first year of the long awaited World Manta Day on September 17, and Six Senses Laamu and the Manta Trust couldn’t be more excited to join the celebrations!

Although manta rays and their cousins are on the forefront of the Manta Trust’s minds and work, there are still many, many people who don’t know what manta rays are, or realise the threats they are facing!

Manta rays are close relatives of sharks and rays. The largest individuals can reach as many as seven meters in width and weigh up to two tonnes. However, despite their size, and compared to some of their close relatives, mantas are gentle creatures.

Mantas are found throughout the tropical and sub-tropical oceans of the world. The animals never stop moving, as they must keep water flowing over their gills to respire. Their daily and seasonal movements are tuned to the ebb and flow of the ocean currents that carry the planktonic food upon which they depend.

In recent years, manta ray populations have become threatened through bycatch in fisheries targeting other species, such as tuna and swordfish, but also because their gill plates have recently become sought after for use in Asian medicine.

“We hope to use World Manta Day to spread the word about manta rays far beyond the conservation and scuba diving world,” the Manta Trust said, in an announcement.

Together with the Manta Trust, Six Senses Laamu will celebrate the first ever World Manta Day.

The Manta Trust, the oldest partner NGO in Six Senses Laamu’s Maldives Underwater Initiative (MUI), has been researching Laamu’s manta ray population since 2014 and now have a database of over 130 manta rays identified locally. Their research projects also include ultra scanning pregnant manta rays and using stereo-video technology to determine growth rates!

“It’s about time these beautiful gentle giants get a day of their own and here at the resort we have a lot planned for this special occasion,” Six Senses Laamu said, in a separate announcement.

Six Senses Laamu is the first and one of only two resorts in the pristine Laamu atoll. Most of the villas and facilities are built overwater, however beach villas and on-land dining are an option. All villas offer a sense of privacy and seclusion, with an amazing view to the ocean and Maldivian nature.

Six Senses Laamu offers a wide range of dining options, with cuisines from around the world, an ice cream parlour, an overwater wine cellar and a signature Chill Bar.

Many activities, excursions and options are available for everyone to enjoy, both overwater and underwater, in addition to the Six Senses Spa.

Six Senses Laamu hosts one of the largest teams of marine biologists in the Maldives, the Maldives Underwater Initiative (MUI). Staff from Six Senses Laamu and its three partner NGOs: Manta Trust, Blue Marine Foundation and Olive Ridley Project work together under the banner of MUI and seek to lead the tourism industry in the Maldives with meaningful marine conservation efforts based on research, education and community outreach.

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