Manta Ray Migration Study

August 23, 2011 § 2 Comments

From El Comerical

Real-time tracking of multiple rays is possible thanks to joint efforts of the Galapagos National Park, National Park Foundation Machalilla Equilibrio Azul.

Last week, two technicians from the Galapagos National Park,  three officials Machalilla National Park, and two divers from Equilibrio Azul, established the monitoring and marking of rays in the island of La Plata on the coast of Manabi, in order to obtain information on the movements of rays.

During the trip, which lasted four days, placed tranmitters on six manta rays.  These tramsmitters emit signals to a receiver installed in different parts of the coast.

Tags were also placed on three rays which emit signals in real time to the satellite monitoring center installed in the offices of the Galapagos National Park Service on the island of Santa Cruz

The first satellite images show that the rays are moving around the island off the coast of Manta and Bahia de Caraquez. 

“The goal of this project is to measure the migration patterns of this species in the coastal area to see if there are other sites that are preferred for them on the Ecuadorian coast and can be protected, in addition to verifying whether there is connectivity with other areas like the Galapagos or the South Pacific region, “said the ranger Eduardo Espinoza, head of the Galapagos National Park Marine Research. 

Manta rays are a protected species by the Ecuadorian government since 2010, including in the list of endangered species by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), but most are considered a symbol of tourism in some dive sites Ecuadorian coast.

January through March  is considered manta ray season where  Galapagos divers can dive with rays off the coast of Isabela.

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