Happy Halloween!

Happy Halloween!

Happy Halloween from the Manta Ray Advocates!
In 50 combined years of diving with the Kona Manta Rays, we have never seen ANYTHING like this…a clown on the Manta Ray Dive. Who would have thought?

Enjoy…

With Aloha
Martina, Jim, Ryan and Sam

GREAT NEWS for the Mantas – Regulations are coming

GREAT NEWS for the Mantas – Regulations are coming

GREAT NEWS for our Kona Mantas: regulations are coming and have been long in the make.

A week ago the legal fellow from the Department of Land and Natural Resources (DLNR) invited to meet with all manta boat operators and stakeholders. It was a great exchange of ideas and suggestions on how this unique industry can move towards a sustainable (I love that word!) future. As always, my team participated and it felt really good to see that the officials have “heard” us.

Over-capacity and questionable conduct of operators are the main problems the Manta Experience is dealing with, and ultimately the Mantas and the reef have paid a price for it.

Book with a boat operator who is most ecologically-minded and simply reads the manual “the Operator Standards” www.MantaRayGreenList.com


Hawaii News Now – KGMB and KHNL

DON’T FORGET to sign up for our newsletter so you won’t miss any updates about the progress made to safeguard an “Experience-of-a-Lifetime”!

With Aloha
Martina & Jim

Adam Walker – Ocean Walker

Adam Walker – Ocean Walker

Imagine spending the next several hours feeling cool, salty water sweep over you as you swim through open-ocean, and this isn’t your first time. You are one of 6 people to ever swim the Ocean 7.

The toughest 7 ocean swims in the world, – the English Channel, – the Strait of Gibraltar, – Catalina Channel, – Cook Strait, – Molokai Strait, – North Channel, and – Tsugaru Channel. This is the real-life experience of Adam Walker.

Adam Walker is one of 6 people to ever complete the Ocean 7 and the first British person. He is one of 2 only who did all 7 without any failed attempts (btw he also did a 2 way Gibraltar straits), and he came to visit us! Adam joined the French Production Company MC4, Director John Jackson and Assistant Keir Byatt as we explored Manta Rays! The MC4 crew had seen my viral Dolphin Rescue video, circa 2013, and they felt compelled to interview me!!

 

I’m honored to have been filmed under water by world renowned videographer Roberto Rinaldi for a series international shows that will air in December 2015! In France the special “Thalassa” and in Canada “Nature of Things with David Suzuki” will center on “Dolphin Intelligence”, these specials will highlight 25 human encounter with dolphins.

Adam shared with us his unforgettable interaction with dolphins (and I am sharing it with you). In April of 2014, Adam was swimming New Zealands’ Cook Strait.

After several hours of swimming he peered down, only to realize that there was a great white shark beneath him. Adam, naturally, was concerned about the sharks close proximity, when suddenly a pod of dolphins surrounded him. Over the next hour the dolphins accompanied Adam on his swim through Cook Strait, at points getting so close that they made it difficult to swim. “I’d like to think they were protecting me and guiding me home!” he posted on Facebook. “This swim will stay with me forever.”

We had the privilege of escorting Adam Walker and the MC4 crew on the Manta Experience with Big Island Divers, we shared my love for Manta Rays and how they have changed my life so many years ago, and still today.

Stay tuned for updates and enjoy the short video we made for Adam Walker.
It was inspiring to meet a fellow ocean lover and advocate!!

Aloha, Martina!
Manta Ray Advocate

GoPro is NoPro! HILARIOUS!

GoPro really is NoPro…at night…in the ocean!   A comedy and thoughtful reminder of what happens to guests when they bring their cameras. We have seen it all 🙂

Our famous Manta Ray Experience in Kona, Hawaii is considered a bucket list item and a MUST for ocean goers and Manta Ray Lovers. People from all over the world travel to this exotic destination to get an up-close encounter with the beautiful and mesmerizing gentle giants of the sea.

Too many times we encountered divers and snorkelers over-tasking themselves with photography while they should enjoy this incredible and unique nature spectacle. Handling a camera on the ocean is challenging.  Learn what can go wrong! We want to encourage you to give the Manta Rays your full attention.

Since 1991, our team is specialized to film this dive. With the increased use of underwater cameras (everyone has one), we feel that the guests are missing out on the manta show.  Recently we were visited by the rarest mammal in the US, the Hawaiian Monk Seal, and one diver didn’t even see it because he was busy with his camera (see Minute 1:54)

We want to encourage everyone who participates to check with us at www.mantarayproductions.tv before embarking onto this Experience of a Lifetime.
Let us worry about the photography. Don’t miss the show.

If you visited already, then check out the nightly videos and photos available in our online store.

On a personal note: GoPro did it. Their marketing is excellent and these little cameras have produced amazing stuff. I guess every professional photographer goes thru the motions of losing business to today’s selfie world.
But we have a saying in the diving industry: “A GoPro makes a bad diver a dangerous diver (to himself and others)”. Mistakes on scuba or snorkeling can cost you dearly and I wish there would be more emphasis on safety than taking your own picture.
I wanted to create this promo for a long time. A big Mahalo to my team members for producing it with me. This was a lot of fun and Adam Fram: you are a real “talent” 🙂

With Aloha
Martina Wing
Manta Ray Advocate
& Professional Underwater Photographer

P.S. ….and for everyone preparing to come to Kona, click here to get our “FREE GUIDE to the Manta Ray Experience – 25 Essentials to get the most from this Adventure of a Lifetime”.

RAREST MAMMAL in the USA at Manta Ray Night Dive

RAREST MAMMAL in the USA at Manta Ray Night Dive

RAREST MAMMAL in USA sighted at Manta Ray Night Dive in Kona Hawaii!

Waimanu – a Hawaiian Monk seal – was seen at “Manta Ray Heaven” a few times over the past few weeks, but always on the dark outskirts. Saturday and Sunday night, we captured NEVER-BEFORE-SEEN footage of Waimanu swimming through the dive site while the Manta Rays were feeding on plankton.

The Hawaiian Monk seal is considered a critically endangered animal with a population of approximately 1100. Most Hawaiian Monk Seals live around the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands; only a few populate the main Hawaiian Islands. Three monk seals inhabit the Big Island and Waimanu – the only female – is currently pregnant.

Ryan, our newest team member Adam and myself captured a truly breathtaking encounter.

Share it with the world and let us know what you think!

Learn more about protecting Hawaiian Monk Seals: www.NOAA.gov

UPDATE March 6: Within 4 days the video already made it onto Yahoo.com/GrindTV.com, KHON2 and Hawaii News Now!!!

This is so exciting – lots of Aloha
Martina, Jim, Ryan and Adam

Dolphin Rescue Hawaii – 2 year anniversary and update

Dolphin Rescue Hawaii – 2 year anniversary and update

Aloha and Happy New Year 2015!
Today is a special day: it is the 2-year anniversary of “Dolphin Rescue Hawaii”, the rare video I shot of a wild Bottlenose Dolphin being rescued from fishing line entanglement  (January 11, 2013).  It happened during the Manta Ray Experience and it was an incredible moment: truly breath-taking, inspiring and providing the message the world needs!

The days and weeks after the video went viral were incredible. I got calls from CNN, CBS, Good Morning America, FoxNews, ABC with Diane Sawyer, WDR, RTL, Westdeutsche Zeitung, Tagesschau/Nachtmagazin etc and also interviewed with the BBC Breakfast TV via skype. These were exciting times, which continued when the BBC “Inside the animals mind”, National Geographic “Animals gone wild”, MINA TV “Die tierischen Zehn” und Globo TV (Brazil) “Fantastico” integrated the film into their productions. Two other you tube channels reloaded my original dolphin rescue video, and together we have over 15 Million hits. We received thousands of comments and emails. A true testament to the uniqueness of the subject matter. It is also very unusual for a clip this long to accumulate so many views.

The most common question we received was, “Is the dolphin okay?”

Amazingly, our very own E. Ryan Leinbach encountered the Bottlenose dolphin again and today on the two-year anniversary of the rescue, our team is very excited to present: Dolphin Rescue Hawaii – Update: A Chance Encounter. A MUST SEE!

It was on March 30, 2014 around 11AM, when Ryan encountered Notch about 2-3 miles of shore in “blue water”, meaning the ocean is just blue and several hundred meters deep. She was scanning the surface for something exciting to see, and when she
discovered several dolphins, her group of snorkelers glided into the water to check it out. Notch came over to the group and was making whistling and clicking noises. After he checked everything, he went back to his original doings of courtship behavior with a female. We can conclude that Notch is not just okay, he is actually thriving and making more little dolphins. How cool is that?
From a humanized perspective, you might think that Notch was happy to see humans, but from a natural stand-point (and I prefer the down-to-earth approach) you can suggest that Notch was just verifying that the creatures entering his neighborhood were not a threat or something to be concerned with.

Although, both Ryan and myself have several thousands hours swimming and filming dolphins on the Kona Coast, we both have never seen this particular behaviour when Notch went spiraling into the deep blue, came straight back to the surface and swam around the humans. It is very rare footage and supports the theory that he was a “happy camper”.
Well, who really knows , but we make people think, right?

At the beginning of this year (Jan 1 until 9) we joined the local “Waimea Ocean Film Festival” on the Big Island. We submitted the full story of Notch: before the rescue; the actual rescue and the re-union. The screenings with live Q&A were a big success.
Here is a beautiful story from one event: A gentleman walked up to me and told me that he was with me on the boat when the Dolphin Rescue took place. We traveled back together to the harbor. I was on such an adrenaline high, saying things like “this video will go viral” or “millions of people will see this“. The guy, Dave, thought I was a total nutcase for saying that stuff. He thought I was some crazy
lady LOL…but here we go…15 Mil hits on YouTube and counting.

The Waimea Ocean Festival edit/story is available to everyone, as we offer the HD download for ONLY $5. YES, no kidding ONLY $5. The contributions will help us to continue our Manta Ray advocacy and ocean education.

On a personal note: The last two years were a whirlwind for many other reasons. In the summer of 2013, I unfortunately (or fortunately) was diagnosed with breast cancer, so for a while my work had to be 2nd priority. The final steps to recovery were taken a few months ago (September 2014), and I can only say, everything is fine! I am not only a cancer survivor, I am a cancer thriver.
The BC diagnosis actually fueled me even more to continue my ocean advocacy and education for Manta Rays and marine life, as it is my true love and passion. I am in the right place and can apply all my skills: from engineering to web-design to video production. My group recently started the Manta Ray Advocacy movement. The Manta Ray activity is over-capacity and and as a result the mantas are getting hurt. My small team has the means, knowledge and imagery to make a difference. Learn more here!

Our intention for sharing this footage:

1. You can make a difference every day, even if you don’t see the result immediately.
Who would have thought that Notch from being in trouble with the (man-made) fishing line entanglement would end up thriving and procreate?
2 We can co-exist with other creatures. Although humans know so much, they only know so little.
3. The footage is very beautiful and enjoyable to watch.
4. Our company’s mission statement is: “Inspiring, educating and transforming public consciousness with stunning imagery“.  We feel we are delivering and are planning to continue on this path.
Share this post, let us go viral, contribute $5!

Best wishes for 2015.
Aloha
Martina Wing