Overfishing threatens the magnificent and prized ‘Ali Maduwa’, writes Malaka Rodrigo.
A giant “maduwa”, or manta ray, was netted last week by fisherman in Welipatanwila, Ambalanthota, on the South coast. The ocean creature was pregnant and weighed 1,500 kilograms. A week earlier, another manta ray was caught by fishermen in Akkaraipattu, on the East coast. Both sea creatures have been identified as Giant Oceanic Manta Rays, the largest member of the ray family.
Manta rays, close to the heart of every diver, are at risk of extinction. The time is now to protect them! If you take a PADI course in 2013 you can choose the Project AWARE limited edition manta ray card and make a donation to help protect manta rays.
FACT: Manta ray catch has nearly quadrupled in seven years according to the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO).
A big thanks to Austin Williams for raising over $2,000 through the sale of his funky t-shirt designs. Austin combines his creativity and passion for the ocean to create unique humorous t-shirts with a serious message.
“Dive T-Shirts supports Project AWARE’s Mantas at Risk Campaign and this month’s favourite tee is ‘What Manta?’ said Austin.
Manta rays are so popular with divers and snorkelers that a single animal can 'earn' more than US$ 1 million over its lifetime for local eco-tourism, according to a new report issued by the Manta Ray of Hope Project. MORE