Photo of the Day 29 July 2008

Manta Ray, Mexico, 2007
Photograph by Brian J. Skerry
A leaping manta ray (Manta birostris) seems to fly above the Gulf of California off the coast of Mexico. Mantas, easily recognizable by their pectoral "wings," stay near the ocean's surface, unlike other rays. They leap—up to seven feet (two meters) high—then return to the surface with a resounding slap.