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Rescue Team Saves Manta Ray Entangled in Fishing Net in Maldives

A marine conservation group filmed the removal of a fishing net from a manta ray off the coast of the Maldives.Footage captured by Jasmine Corbett from the Manta Trust shows a team of researchers removing the algae-covered net from the manta ray’s cephalic fin, near the animal’s head.The mantra ray, named Lenny, was first identified by the conservation group in 2010. Corbett told Storyful that despite being “afraid at first” Lenny let them remove the net and that his “injuries are healing well”.“The cuts were very deep, and he also displayed shark bites on his body, due to injured manta rays being more vulnerable to predation,” Corbett said.Mantra rays are becoming increasingly entangled in ghost gear (abandoned or damaged fishing gear) or caught as bycatch in industrial fishing nets, according to a report by Australia’s National Science Agency.“Although the Maldives does not fish with nets, ghost gear drifting from other countries frequently entangles marine life there,” Corbett said. Credit: Jasmine Corbett – Manta Trust via Storyful