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Filed Under (Fishing, Scuba Diving) by Marian on July-30-2008

A second and possibly third species of manta ray discovered

Genetic and morphological analysis has now confirmed the existence of a second species of manta ray, and possibly a third one as well. Up until know, the scientific community only knew about one single species of manta ray and all encountered manta rays were viewed as variants within the same species. PhD marine biologist Andrea Marshall did however suspect that there might be more than one species of manta ray luring in the ocean and in 2003 she to a small coastal village located in southern Mozambique to be able to study the manta rays found off the African coast. During the last five years, she has been carrying out a manta ray study sponsored by the Save Our Seas Foundation and discovered a new species as well as collected invaluable information about the reproductive habits of the manta rays.

The two manta rays species have overlapping geographical ranges, but they have significantly different life styles. One species is migratory while the other one – the smaller and more commonly known species – is resident to particular costal regions where it stays year round. There are also noticeable differences in reproductive biology, skin texture and colouration.

The small, stationary species is commonly encountered by divers and researchers at coral reefs, while the larger, migratory species is much more elusive.

The pectoral fins of a manta ray can span almost 8 meters in width and the weight of this baffling shark relative can exceed 2000 kg. Unlike the stingray, the manta ray is not equipped with a functioning stinging barb, but one of the manta ray species actually has a non-functioning type of sting on its tail.

According to the Save Our Seas Foundation, Andrea Marshall’s new finding is the marine equivalent of discovering an unknown species of elephant.

You can find out more by visiting the Save Our Seas Foundation (http://www.saveourseas.com/manta-rays-a-new-species) and the Mozambique Manta Ray project page (http://www.saveourseas.com/manta-rays-mozambique).



Filed Under (Bazaruto Islands, Mozambique News, Mozambique Travel) by BC Travel on July-9-2008

Santa Carolina Island, part of the Bazaruto archipelago, off the coast of the southern Mozambican province of Inhambane, will soon have a luxury hotel, thanks to a 50 million US dollar investment by the Rani Resorts Group.

The Mozambican Tourism Ministry approved in March a proposal for the building of the new hotel.

Rani Resorts, founded by Saudi businessman Adel Aujan, owns a chain of hotels in Mozambique, including the Indigo Bay Island Resort on Bazaruto, the largest island in the archipelago, the Pemba Beach Hotel, in the northern province of Cabo Delgado, and luxury resorts on Medjumbe and Matemo Islands in the Quirimbas archipelago, off the northern coast.

The group is currently designing the architecture of the hotel on Santa Carolina, which should be presented to the government before the end of this year. In the meantime, work is underway to demolish the ruins of the existing hotel.
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Filed Under (Mozambique News, Mozambique Travel) by BC Travel on July-1-2008

Maputo, Mozambique, 1 July – The Ponta do Ouro Marine Reserve, in the south of Mozambique, is to be given World Heritage status by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) in December of this year, the Mozambican Tourism Minister said.

Fernando Sumbana told Mozambican news agency AIM, at the end of a meeting with his South African and Swazi counterparts that the decision aimed to protect and conserve marine species such as turtles, whales and dolphins.
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Filed Under (Mozambique News) by marian on May-29-2008

Maputo, Mozambique, 29 May – Mozambique’s tourism minister, Fernando Sumbana, said Wednesday in Maputo that in 2007 the tourism sector in the country had attracted investment of around US$900 million.

In 2006 the sector saw investments of some US$600 million.

The tourism sector, according to the minister, is developing in a satisfactory way after seeing a recession during the civil war due to destruction of the country’s infrastructure.

O sector is now witnessing high levels of investment based on Mozambnique taking advantage of the Soccer World Cup taking place in South Africa.

Mozambique is expecetd to be visited by around 100,000 tourists during the World Cup and see revenues of some US$500 million.

The tourism sector posted revenues of US$280 million in 2007, as compared to US$163 million in 2006.

Currently some refurbishment and construction of airports is underway in some areas of Mozambique.

Mozambique and the World Bank’s lending arm, the International Finance Corporation, recently signed a U$3.1 billion deal for tourism projects along the southern African state’s 2,500 km (1,553 miles) coastline.



Filed Under (Bazaruto Islands, Mozambique islands, Pemba, Quirimbas) by BC Travel on May-23-2008

Rani Resorts owns Pemba Beach Resort, Indigo Bay Island Resort, Matemo Island Resort, Medjumbe Island Resort and Lugenda Bush Camp. Rani Resorts has perfected the talent of indulging guests in exotic and unspoiled locations in southern Africa. Rani embraces some of the area’s most stunning destinations – the jewel-like Bazaruto Island and Quirimbas Archipelagos, historical Pemba and the untouched wilderness of Niassa Game Reserve.

Each exclusive Rani property has been designed to world-class standards, each one reflecting the natural beauty of its surrounds. Their portfolio of well known properties includes island retreats off the coast of Mozambique, private game reserves on the African mainland and a resort on the Mozambican coast.
Holiday in Mozambique



Filed Under (Mozambique News, Mozambique Travel) by BC Travel on April-29-2008

Travelers should be aware of the risks of crime, poor road safety standards and limited health facilities in Mozambique. With that said, Mozambique is a moderately low-risk country as far as crime is concerned and the vast majority of visits to Mozambique are trouble-free. Keep a close watch on your possessions in busy places and keep all your valuables in a hidden money belt.

Avoid driving at night whenever possible and set off as early as possible so that you have as much time as possible to deal with delays. When dealing with officials, be friendly and patient and treat them with respect. They are likely to reciprocate.

If you are visiting the Bazaruto Archipelago, the only real dangers are razor clams which are exposed at low tides. It is recommended you wear sandals to avoid cutting your feet on these.



Filed Under (Bazaruto Islands, Destinations, Honeymoon, Mozambique islands, Mozambique Travel, Pemba, Quirimbas) by BC Travel on April-24-2008

Mozambique is home to the Bazaruto Archipelago – a group of remote, untouched islands. This area is off the beaten track and if you are looking for stunning beaches, clear azure sea and relaxation then Mozambique could be the place for you.

Accommodation varies from Eco lodges, such as Guludo Lodge – this is tents on the beach, very rustic and fantastic for scuba diving! – to 5 star deluxe resorts, such as Indigo Bay – wonderful for honeymooners. Ibo Island is steeped in history, guests stay in an old Portuguese house which has been renovated to a very high standard.

Many people think that Mozambique is inaccessible & hard to reach, but LAM, Turbo Max and SA Airlink all fly directly to various cities in Mozambique.



Filed Under (Accommodation, Bazaruto Islands, Inhambane, Mozambique islands) by BC Travel on April-18-2008

Visiting Pemba, a coastal town at the mouth of a huge bay with a great beach, some interesting buildings and a lively atmosphere – Exploring llha de Mozambique, the northern half of which has been declared a Unesco World Heritage-listed site – Swimming at the Bazaruto Archipelago National Park Seeing the grand Zambezi River dammed by the Barragem de Cahora Bassa-set in stunning scenery at the head of a magnificent gorge – Lazing on the long, beautiful beaches of Tofo and Barra