Young toddlers frequently make unusual friend choices. Some even have imagined companions. But not the young man in this video. His special pal is a kind, massive manta ray.
His unique bond with the massive sea creature was captured on camera at a Canary Island wharf. This beautiful subtropical archipelago is located to the northwest of Africa, and visitors may expect to observe a plethora of rays and fish in the coastal waters.
Rays congregate routinely around this set of stone stairs at the waterfront, where local fishermen discard their rejects and scraps every day. Many aquatic species in the area have learned to rely on the delectable scraps for a free supper.
This day, the child was filmed feeding his pal, a friendly manta ray who he frequently calls in for a hand-held treat. The ray exhibits no concern in approaching the steps to collect the food from his friend’s hand and even takes the boy’s petting calmly.
You could almost be forgiven for thinking the couple was welcoming each other tenderly and enjoying each other’s company. While the child fed the ray, the trusting creature fluttered its enormous wings, attempting to get even closer to him.
It’s not that strange, though, considering manta rays are recognized for being friendly and unthreatening. They are regarded to be more intelligent than most marine animals, and they are frequently quite interested in humans.
Manta rays are the largest stingray species. They can grow to be more than 20 feet wide and three thousand pounds! They are not generally violent, but will defend themselves if attacked or scared, as most animals do. There have been very few reported stingray deaths. You are significantly more likely to be harmed by an ordinary domestic cow.