The Flying Mobulas of the Sea of Cortez

I’m not much of a scientist, in fact, I’m not a scientist at all – I just play one (poorly) on this blog. Wait a second, I’m not playing a scientist, I just watch a lot of PBS and Discovery Channel.

In any event, I am a fan of science, someone who can appreciate the beauty and mystery of nature. These are the real reasons I’m in love with this article about The Flying Mobulas of the Sea of Cortez .

Paul and Michael Albert tell an amazing story in both pictures and words about a certain species of Manta Ray that is given to aerial, out-of-water displays. Having just seen a few varieties of rays on our recent vacation (pictures on Flickr soon), I’m amazed by this breaching behavior.

Flying Mobula breaching

The article touches on every part of this intriguing story – the science of behavior, the many breeds of mobula (ray), the fisherman who work the waters of the Sea of Cortez, and the shaky future of these amazing animals.

This quote sums things up nicely:

Much about the mobula perplexes me, but most of all I find it strange that a creature whose continued existence remains in doubt could choose that moment to behave with such exuberance. Explain those exquisite belly flops how you will. I call it joyful survival.

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