Research at the Zavora Marine Lab is a culmination of over eight years of experience and training, ground-breaking discovery and vibrant connection to the local and regional environments. The mega and macrofauna in Zavora Bay enjoy some of the most pristine, untouched reefs in the world. Manta rays, whale sharks and humpback whales thrive in the plankton rich waters of coastal Mozambique. Humpbacks in particular spend considerable time in Zavora Bay during their Arctic migration. Sharks, skates and other rays are also abundant in Mozambique. Despite the attraction of these and other charismatic species, marine life everywhere are growing increasingly vulnerable to unsustainable fishing practices, growing industrial development, pollution and climate change.

Marine Action Research’s (MAR) main goal is to generate critical and comprehensive data that will be used to conserve marine life and ensure that future generations can enjoy the stunning marine life of Mozambique. MAR contributes to several national and international studies linked with conservation and wildlife/fisheries law.


The Mozambique Government has begun the process of creating a Marine Protected Area to safeguard the populations of manta rays and whale sharks in Inhambane Province. MAR continues to contribute to this effort by providing valuable data to assist decision-makers. Zavora has limited infrastructure and development, but is one of the biggest hot spots for manta rays in southern Mozambique. Information

Research conducted by the Zavora Marine Lab shows that from March to December 2010, 81.2% sighting success for manta on shallow reefs. The protection of this area is essential to avoid issues stemming from future or development in Zavora.

Learn more about MAR’s core research…

humpback wreck nudibranch mantaray