Manta Ray Reproduction

Manta Ray Reproduction

Manta Ray Breeding and Reproduction

For the Manta Ray maturity to reproduce is dependent upon size rather than age. For the males it is when they are approximately 13 feet in length. For the females it is when they are approximately 16 feet long. The males are very aggressive when it comes to the actual mating process. You will often notice that the females have bite marks on their skin from this taking place.

During the courting phase the two Manta Rays may be seen moving rapidly throughout the water. The female will often try to escape but the male will catch her by one of the fins. Then they will move into a position where their bellies are touching each other for the mating to take place. After the mating has been completed the male and female will go their separate ways.

There is plenty of competition for the mating. This is why the males can be very aggressive against each other for the right to mate with the females in the area. The gestation period for the Manta Ray isn’t known. This is because breeding can take place all year long as long as their basic needs are being met. However, it is speculated to be from one to thirteen months.

The offspring are protected inside of the female’s bodies with a thin layer of mucus membrane. This will later on allow it to hatch inside of the mother. From that point she will eventually give birth to the pup live. There is no egg hatched and then offspring come from as many people mistakenly assume.

There are many reports of Manta Rays giving birth prematurely and the offspring being dead. This is generally due to the onset of stress and it can trigger a response that is called spontaneous abortion. The process will occur while the Manta Ray is in the air jumping so it can be seen with the naked eye observing it. When a Manta Ray feels that its own life is in danger it will expel the offspring to survive.

The females give birth to one pup at a time. After conception an egg will form in her body. Then the egg will hatch inside of the body and the offspring will be born alive from the mother. The egg offers the pup the nutrition that it needs during this process because there is no placenta for it to attach to.

The females jump into the air several feet when it is time to give birth. This process will continue until the offspring is born. They instinctively know how to swim the moment that they are born.

The offspring remain in the extremely shallow bodies of water for the first few years of life. It is believed that they have to care for themselves from the moment that they are born. There isn’t any evidence to suggest that the mother’s stick around to help them with survival. As a result it is believed that there is an extremely high mortality rate in the first year of life.