KRALENDIJK – The Bonairean divemaster Rugene Marinus, better known as Spider, had the best experience of his life last week when a Manta Ray asked him for help during a dive.
Spider was on his way with his American guests for a second dive with the Blue Moon boat of Toucan Diving, where he has been working for 6 years. The Villigers group consists of retired Florida seniors over 70. During the dive off the coast of Bonaire, a large manta approached the group from the deep.
“The divemaster immediately saw that the Manta needed help because a large knot of fishing lines was visible. Spider swam towards the animal and was able to remove most of the lines, but not all. At this, a lady from the group handed over her knife as the Manta clearly came back for more help. The last pieces of line were also removed, after which the animal swam away.” Said a proud Hagen Wegerer, manager of Toucan Diving,
The entire relief effort happened before the eyes of the Florida diving group, so that plenty of photos and video could be taken. To everyone’s surprise, the Manta came back, did a somersault and disappeared again into the blue water.
Phillis Mihalas shared her experience with Caribbean Islands Manta Conservation Program. The organization was able to officially register the manta due to the amount and quality of the photos and named it “Spyphill”.