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OBSERVE ONLY: No touching is allowed. Resist the urge to “pet” the mantas. This will rub off their protective mucus coating. Do not chase, grab, or try to take a ride on the mantas. This doesn’t benefit the animal in anyway.
DIVER POSITION: Divers must stay on or near the sand, rubble or boulder bottom. An open water column is necessary for the mantas to maneuver. Avoid contact with coral, sea urchins, or other marine life. Form a semi-circle with your group.
SNORKELER POSITION: Snorkelers must stay on the surface and keep legs horizontal. Do not dive down into the water column.
LIGHTS: Divers please shine lights up into the water column to attract plankton. Snorkelers please shine lights down.
BUBBLES: Divers try to time your breathing so you don’t blow bubbles up into a manta as they pass over your head.
TAKING PHOTOS or VIDEO: When taking underwater photos or video, be considerate of people and mantas. Minimize your equipment in the water column and let the mantas come to you.
These guidelines were first established in 1993 by manta dive operators in Kona, Hawaii. Reviewed again in 2013 by manta tour operators (dive and snorkel operators).