Manta and devil rays are some of the most charismatic creatures in the ocean. Born into a life of perpetual motion, these rays must keep swimming to survive. Driven forward by powerful beats of their wing-like pectoral fins, these filter feeding rays search the ocean currents for prey, their horn-like cephalic (head) fins giving rise to ancient mariners' tales of fearsome devilfish dragging boats into the depths. Beloved by scuba divers and marine biologists alike, these impressive animals have never had a comprehensive field guide dedicated to them - until now.
Guide to the Manta and Devil Rays of the World includes detailed information on the identification,
characteristics, threats and distribution for each of the species within this family of rays. Illustrated with over 200 beautiful colour photos, drawings and plates, this guide also contains an expansive introduction packed full of useful information on the general taxonomy, biology and behaviour of these iconic animals.
This book will be an invaluable field companion for any scientist, diver or marine enthusiast who has an interest in these fascinating creatures. It is an essential resource for fisheries management, international trade enforcement, and for anyone wanting to become involved in the ongoing efforts to research and conserve this threatened family of rays.
Guy Stevens is the Chief Executive and Founder of the Manta Trust, a UK and US registered charity dedicated to the conservation of manta rays, with collaborative projects in over 20 countries. He has spent the last decade studying manta and mobulid rays all over the world and is one of the foremost experts. Daniel Fernando is an Associate Director of the Manta Trust, and Co-Founder of Blue Resources Trust - a Sri Lankan NGO dedicated to promoting informed, science-based decision making to facilitate the conservation and sustainable use of marine resources, and to provide a platform for scientists to expand research in the Indian Ocean. Giuseppe Notarbartolo di Sciara is an Italian marine conservation ecologist who has worked for 40 years to advance knowledge of the natural history, ecology, behaviour and taxonomy of marine mammals and cartilaginous fishes.
Acknowledgements and image creditsaA A 5 The authorsaA A 6 Save Our Seas FoundationaA A 8 The Manta TrustaA A 9 IntroductionaA A 11 An introduction to mobulid raysaA A 12 Taxonomy and evolutionaA A 14 Mobulid geneticsaA A 16 Feeding strategiesaA A 18 Leaping devilsaA A 26 Cleaning giantsaA A 30 Predators and wound healingaA A 33 Intestinal eversion and vomitingaA A 36 Remoras and hitchhikersaA A 37 Courtship and matingaA A 41 Mating scarsaA A 46 Gestation and puppingaA A 48 Big and brainyaA A 51 Patterning and morphsaA A 52 MorphologyaA A 58 SpiraclesaA A 60 Gill platesaA A 62 Sexual dimorphismaA A 64 species accountsaA A 65 Species keyaA A 66 Reef Manta RayaA A Mobula alfredi (Krefft, 1868)aA A 70 Oceanic Manta RayaA A Mobula birostris (Walbaum, 1792)aA A 74 Longhorned Pygmy Devil RayaA A Mobula eregoodootenkee (Bleeker, 1859)aA A 78 West Atlantic Pygmy Devil RayaA A Mobula hypostoma (Bancroft, 1831)aA A 82 Shorthorned Pygmy Devil RayaA A Mobula kuhlii (Muller & Henle, 1841)aA A 86 Spinetail Devil RayaA A Mobula mobular* (Bonnaterre 1788)aA A 90 Munk's Pygmy Devil Ray Mobula munkiana Notarbartolo di Sciara, 1987 94 East Atlantic Pygmy Devil RayaA A Mobula rochebrunei (Vaillant, 1879)aA A 98 Sicklefin Devil RayaA A Mobula tarapacana (Philippi, 1892)aA A 102 Bentfin Devil RayaA A Mobula thurstoni (Lloyd, 1908)aA A 106 Caribbean Manta RayaA A Mobula cf. birostrisaA A 110 *Mobula japanica has now been merged with Mobula mobular. Mobulid Rays and HUmansaA A 113 Mobulid threatsaA A 114 FisheriesaA A 115 Gill plate tradeaA A 117 Bycatch and discardaA A 119 Conserving manta and devil raysaA A 120 Protective legislationaA A 124 Marine protected areasaA A 126 Citizen scienceaA A 129 Manta identificationaA A 130 Swimming with mobulid raysaA A 131 Code of conductaA A 132 AppendicesaA A 135 Data collection protocolsaA A 136 Customs and trade inforcement guideaA A 139 GlossaryaA A 142 IndexaA A 143