We plan to leave Bora Bora for Aitutaki in the Cooks tonight, so in a last ditch effort at seeing some manta rays before we leave, Jason and I booked a dive this morning. We’ve tried to swim with them since the Galapagos, and we never could seem to catch them while they were relaxed and visibility was good, but today really paid off.

We saw about 6 manta rays, one of whom was about 4m wide and pregnant! We learned they carry their pregnancy on their back, and it bulges up like the roof of a VW bug, which looks pretty weird. It explains the bulging manta we saw on the surface in Rangiroa as well. We were wondering why it looked so strange. During the dive we just sat on the bottom of a channel and let them glide by. They came right up to us, and it’s an experience I believe we’ll carry with us for a long time to come.

These mantas crossed right in front of us on the bottom.

These mantas crossed right in front of us on the bottom

Pregnant manta ray swims above the reef. You can tell she's pregnant because of the bump on her back.

Pregnant manta ray swims above the reef. You can tell she's pregnant because of the bump on her back.

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