Ecuador

A manta ray near Isla de la Plata off the coast of Ecuador. Photo courtesy Fundacion Megafauna Marina del Ecuador.
A manta ray near Isla de la Plata off the coast of Ecuador

Largest known manta ray population is thriving off the coast of Ecuador

Although manta rays are readily capable of long-distance movements of hundreds if not thousands of kilometres, most populations appear to be philopatric (tending to return to or remain near a particular site or area—ed.) with few examples of long-distance dispersal.

Oceanic manta rays, the largest ray species, were listed as threatened under the U.S. Endangered Species Act in 2018. In 2019, their threat category increased from vulnerable to endangered on the International Union for the Conservation of Nature’s Red List.

Unbelievable Galapagos Offers From Master Liveaboards

Individual Offers

All cruises onboard Galapagos Master departing from the 10th May 2021 up to, and including, 6th September 2021 are carrying an amazing 40% discount. For those willing and able to travel, there will never be a better time to dive Galapagos!

You can see check live availability and book spaces in real time on the Master Liveaboards website by hitting this link: masterliveaboards.com/boats/galapagos-master/

Terms and conditions apply (see below)

A natural rock formation known as “Darwin’s Arch” protrudes from the water southeast of Darwin Island. The waters around the small, remote islands of Darwin and Wolf contain the largest biomass of sharks on the planet.

Largest shark biomass found in the Galápagos Islands

Overfishing has reduced biomass of most sharks and other large predatory fishes worldwide by over 90 percent, and even remote locations have been severely impacted. However, a few localities worldwide still maintain large abundances of top predatory fishes due to either being remote and unfished or having recovered after full protection from fishing.

Galápagos’ Isabela Island: The Last Mirage

Seen from space, Isabela Island—the largest island of the Galápagos archipelago— reminds me of a giant seahorse facing the great blue yonder of the Pacific Ocean. As one approaches land, the cap of thin white clouds dissipates. Isabela’s majestic landscape is a perfect alignment of shield volcanoes, rising above 1,000 metres, which stretches from the southeast to the northwest. Among them, Wolf Volcano reaches 1,700 metres.

Galápagos: Where the Big Things Are

Unlike Max in the children’s book by Maurice Sendak, Where the Wild Things Are, I hadn’t worn my wolf suit, or made mischief of one kind or another. I hadn’t been sent to my room before it transformed into an island of magical monsters only reachable after a year of sailing.

I wouldn’t want to spend that long on a boat, so I behaved(ish) and looked forward to being on Galápagos and spending my nights tucked up on dry land.

Galapagos: Diving in a Darwinian World

“Sui Generis” is the most appropriate way I find to describe the Galapagos Islands. A place where the intruder is the human being. A place where many of its inhabitants are animals that exist only in this small piece of the world. A place where evolution seems to have been suspended at some moment in time. A place where we can feel like pioneers in each corner.