Please see below for all press releases 



  • New DNA Research Reveals Connectivity of Manta Rays in Southeastern Africa - To protect threatened species, it is important to understand more about their populations and how different areas are connected. Until recently, scientific studies on manta rays have been heavily focused on photo-identification and tagging to answer questions such as “how big is this population?” or “how far do individuals travel?”. However, genetic techniques are also […]
  • Urban Mantas: A potential nursery ground for manta rays may be under threat off southeastern Florida - The first study on manta rays off the coast of Florida, published today by Endangered Species Research, has discovered a potential urban nursery ground for manta rays. Juvenile manta rays were regularly sighted in the shallow waters along Florida’s coastline, the first time a nursery habitat has been discovered in such a highly developed urban […]
  • First-of-its-kind Global Survey Reveals Sharks could be Better Protected in Mozambique - A new landmark study published today in Nature by Global FinPrint reveals sharks are virtually absent on many of the world’s coral reefs, indicating they are too rare to fulfill their normal role in the ecosystem, otherwise referred to as “functionally extinct.” Of the 371 reefs surveyed in 58 countries, sharks were not observed on […]
  • There’s no place like home for whale sharks in Tanzania - Global lockdowns pose few problems for whale sharks off Tanzania. New research shows that these gigantic fish prefer to stay in the bay they call home. Scientists regard whale sharks as a “highly migratory” species, capable of swimming tens of thousands of kilometers each year. However, a study published today in the journal Frontiers in […]
  • Photo of seabirds nesting among plastics – commended in photography competition - A photo of gannets using discarded nets and ropes to build their nests highlights the increasing problem of plastic pollution for marine life. The image was highly commended in the 2020 Underwater Photographer of the Year competition this week. Dr. Simon J Pierce, a principal scientist at the Marine Megafauna Foundation and wildlife photographer for […]
  • Underwater ‘listening stations’ track reef manta rays in Mozambique - In a new study, published in the journal Marine Ecology Progress Series, researchers from the Marine Megafauna Foundation, University of Western Australia and Utrecht University used acoustic telemetry to identify critical habitat areas and understand movement patterns of reef manta rays in the waters off Mozambique’s Inhambane Province.
  • Microplastics on the menu of manta rays and whale sharks - Plastics pollute Indonesian feeding grounds of plankton-feeding ocean giants   Plastic pollution has a tremendous impact on marine life – and reef manta rays and whale sharks are not spared from it. These large filter-feeders swallow hundreds to thousands of cubic meters of plankton-filled water every day, and with it, tiny plastic pieces from broken […]
  • SCIENTISTS EXPLORE THE OCCURRENCE OF BLACK MANTA RAYS IN THE INDO-PACIFIC - Have you ever seen a black manta ray and wondered what makes it that color? Or whether the darker coloration has any effect on the way the animal lives and behaves? Read more to find out in our new study – the first to investigate melanism in a marine species.
  • Manta rays form social bonds with each other, study shows - Manta rays form social relationships and actively choose their social partners, a new study has revealed. Research published today by scientists from the Marine Megafauna Foundation, Macquarie University, the University of Papua, and the University of York is the first to describe the structure of social relationships in manta rays. Sharks and rays are often […]
  • External press release: Industrialised fishing overlaps threatened shark hotspots worldwide - Even the remotest parts of the ocean appear to offer highly migratory sharks little refuge from industrialised fishing fleets, a ground-breaking study published in the journal Nature reports.
  • FIRST STUDY OF WORLD’S LARGEST MARINE STINGRAY REVEALS LONG-DISTANCE MIGRATION - Scientists use images and videos submitted by tourists to track rare species in Africa Smalleye stingrays are the largest marine stingrays on record, reaching disc widths of up to 222 cm, and yet almost nothing is known about them. Scientists from the Marine Megafauna Foundation have for the first time used photo IDs to study […]
  • TOURISTS AND FISHERS KEY TO FUTURE OF RARE MANTA NURSERY - Scientists from the Marine Megafauna Foundation and Murdoch University are reporting a large number of juvenile manta rays in the waters of Nusa Penida, a small island 18km southeast of Bali, suggesting the area may be a nursery for this threatened species. Infographic and illustrations by Giulia de Amicis  Reef mantas (Mobula alfredi), which grow […]
  • REEF MANTA RAY RECORDED FOR FIRST TIME IN EASTERN PACIFIC - Chance sighting suggests ‘coastal manta’ may venture out further offshore than previously thought A pregnant reef manta ray was encountered for the first time at the remote Cocos Island in the Eastern Tropical Pacific, challenging our current understanding of this threatened species, which is usually known to roam coastal waters. An international team of marine […]
  • INCREDIBLE NUMBERS OF REEF SHARKS FOUND IN PHILIPPINE MARINE PROTECTED AREA - Scientists from Large Marine Vertebrates Research Institute Philippines (LAMAVE), Tubbataha Management Office (TMO) and Marine Megafauna Foundation (MMF) have found incredibly high numbers of reefs sharks in Tubbataha Reefs Natural Park (TRNP), Philippines. The numbers are higher than most other marine protected areas (MPAs) around the world and highlight the importance of large, well-managed marine […]
  • MARINE MEGAFAUNA FOUNDATION LAUNCHES ITS 2019 DIVE EXPEDITION PORTFOLIO - Go Deeper with a Marine Biologist as Your Dive Buddy The Marine Megafauna Foundation – a charity that aims to save threatened marine life – has unveiled dates of its 2019 scuba diving expeditions to Mozambique where guests can join expert marine biologists from the Marine Megafauna Foundation and get hands on with ground-breaking research. […]
  • UNDERWATER ULTRASOUND & FIRST EVER BLOOD SAMPLING ON ADULT WHALE SHARKS, EARTH’S LARGEST FISH - Innovative techniques used on whale sharks in the Galapagos to find out more about their reproduction Researchers in the Galapagos have successfully completed ultrasounds on free-swimming whale sharks, and taken blood samples from adult whale sharks for the first time ever in the wild. The incredible results allowed them to see and identify reproductive organs, […]
  • CREATE WAVES FOR OCEAN CONSERVATION THROUGH YOUR CHRISTMAS SHOPPING - Support the Marine Megafauna Foundation’s vital work with these great gifts   Here are six great gifts to suit all budgets that support the Marine Megafauna Foundation’s vital work into the research and protection of our ocean’s gentle giants. CARRY THE WORLD WITH YOU WITH MERAKI BRACELETS Meraki bracelets (from 25 USD) have 9 element […]
  • MOZAMBICAN GRADUATE APPOINTED AS MMF’S NEWEST RESEARCH FELLOW - Nilza Catarina from Maputo begins her one-year Fellowship with the Marine Megafauna Foundation The Marine Megafauna Association (AMM) has announced the appointment of its latest Mozambican Fellow: Nilza Catarina, 23, from Maputo. As part of the program, Nilza will receive training, one-to-one guidance and mentoring from renowned scientific advisers based at AMM’s research headquarters in […]
  • PERI-PERI DIVERS COMPLETES ITS FIRST MOZAMBICAN APPRENTICESHIP SCHEME - Two local fishermen have qualified as Open Water divers in their first steps to joining the dive industry In partnership with the Marine Megafauna Foundation (MMF), Peri-Peri Divers in Tofo Beach, Mozambique, is pleased to announce the completion of its first ever local apprenticeship scheme. Two local fishermen have spent three months with the company, […]
  • A DEEPER LOOK INTO MOBULID REPRODUCTION - Bohol, Philippines, August 6, 2018, A new scientific publication “Life History, Growth, and Reproductive Biology of Four Mobulid Species in the Bohol Sea, Philippines” has been published in the Journal Frontiers in Marine Science. The study by Large Marine Vertebrates Research Institute Philippines (LAMAVE) was lead by researcher Joshua Rambahiniarison and aimed to determine life […]
  • RESEARCHERS USE “BIOLOGICAL PASSPORT” ON EARTH’S LARGEST FISH - Whale sharks, the world’s largest fish, roam less than previously thought. Local and regional actions are vital for the conservation of this globally endangered species moving forward, according to a new study by researchers from the Marine Megafauna Foundation, University of Southampton, and Sharkwatch Arabia. Their findings are published today in the journal Marine Ecology […]
  • DR. SIMON PIERCE LAUNCHES PATREON CROWDFUNDING CAMPAIGN - Patrons will receive unprecedented access to whale shark research & conservation work Dr. Simon Pierce, co-founder of the Marine Megafauna Foundation (MMF), has launched a new Patreon crowdfunding campaign to help create global protection for the Earth’s largest fish: the endangered whale shark. Patrons will receive unprecedented access to Simon and MMF’s expert whale shark […]
  • PHILIPPINE WATERS ARE CRITICAL FOR WHALE SHARKS - Satellite tag study reveals Philippine waters are incredibly important for endangered whale sharks PeerJ – the Journal of Life & Environmental Sciences A new scientific study published in PeerJ – the Journal of Life and Environmental Sciences has tracked juvenile whale sharks across the Philippines emphasizing the importance of the archipelago for the species. The […]
  • SCUBA DIVERSION LAUNCHES “OFF THE CHART” MYANMAR EXPEDITION - Bespoke expedition to Black Rock and the Burma Banks offers the opportunity to participate in conservation research and learn new photography skills Scuba Diversion has launched an exclusive new 2019 liveaboard expedition to dive Black Rock and the Burma Banks as part of its successful series of “Off The Chart” expeditions. Led by host Ric […]
  • MARINE MEGAFAUNA FOUNDATION LAUNCHES DIVING EXPEDITIONS - Join Andrea Marshall on MMF’s first dive expedition in Mozambique The Marine Megafauna Foundation – a charity that aims to save threatened marine life – has unveiled new scuba diving expeditions to Mozambique where guests can join MMF’s co-founder Andrea Marshall and her team of scientists in their vital conservation research. On this exciting expedition, […]
  • ECO-FRIENDLY BIKINIS SAVING OUR BLUE PLANET - Bikinis can’t save the world, but the women who wear them can! This summer, help save vulnerable marine species by wearing the latest trend in swimwear with stunning MAGDAKINEDESIGNS’ Isabela Top (84 USD) and Isabela Bottoms (70 USD). Each purchase returns a four per cent donation to the Marine Megafauna Foundation in order to support […]
  • MOZAMBICAN GRADUATE CONTRIBUTES TO THE CONSERVATION AND RESEARCH OF OCEAN GIANTS - MMF has announced the successful completion of its first Mozambican Fellowship as Fellow Jorge Sitoe, 30, from Maputo, has completed his one-year program.
  • MADAGASCAR EMERGES AS HOTSPOT FOR ENDANGERED WHALE SHARKS - A new study published in the journal Endangered Species Research has revealed that juvenile whale sharks swim to Madagascar, a newly-identified hotspot for these huge fish, to feed. Eighty-five individual sharks were identified in a single season using photographs of their distinctive spot patterns.
  • INSPIRING FUTURE OCEAN GUARDIANS IN MOZAMBIQUE - MMF has launched a new GoFundMe campaign for its flagship education programme, Ocean Guardians, which aims to inspire a new generation of marine conservationists in Mozambique. The initiative combines marine conservation education, life-saving swimming lessons and extra Saturday activities like beach cleanups and ocean safaris to teach young people how to live with and protect the ocean.
  • MICROPLASTICS AND MEGAFAUNA - Microplastics in our oceans pose a growing concern to megafauna. Manta rays, whale sharks and some other large marine animals are filter feeders, which means they are at risk of ingesting these tiny pieces of plastic. In 2016, we investigated the levels of microplastics in waters where manta rays are feeding in several locations across Indonesia. What we discovered unearthed a shocking reality.
  • FUTURE OCEAN GUARDIANS - For most Mozambicans, the ocean is something to be feared. Many cannot swim and each year countless drowning fatalities occur along the coastline, as people risk their lives on a daily basis to provide for their families. 52% of Mozambicans are under the age of 18, which provides great opportunity for change. Future Ocean Guardians is our flagship education program which aims to create a new generation of ocean guardians who understand and cherish their marine environment.
  • PHOTO IDENTIFICATION AND CITIZEN SCIENCE - To effectively conserve marine wildlife, such as mantas and whale sharks, we must have a firm grasp on their global and regional ecology. Manta rays and whale sharks have natural spot patterns (‘fingerprints’) that do not change markedly over time, allowing us to identify each individual using photographs. This means anyone with an underwater camera can become a 'citizen scientist' and help us identify and track these majestic animals across the world.
  • POPULATION STUDIES AND GENETICS - Sharks and rays are increasingly being identified as threatened with extinction, prompting urgent assessments of their local or regional populations. We need accurate information on population size, structure and connectivity to understand the conservation requirements of a species, develop appropriate management strategies and monitor population health over time.
  • THE GREAT WHALE SHARK MYSTERY - There are several sites where large numbers of whale sharks aggregate, attracting tourists from all over the world. Most of the sharks present at these sites are juvenile males between four and nine meters in length. Of the 7,700 individual sharks identified in the global whale shark database around 2/3 are male. Where are all the females? Where are the adults (and babies) of either sex?
  • THE SUSTAINABLE SEAS PROGRAM - Our flagship conservation initiative, the Sustainable Seas Program, aims to empower communities to manage their marine ecosystems in a sustainable way. We are helping members of the community discover and sustain alternative livelihoods as well as protect their coastal ecosystems, benefitting both present and future generations.