When Thomaz Monteiro and Brian Thompson went for a dive in the depths around Bat Island, off the coast of Costa Rica, they were shocked when a giant sea creature came looming toward them.
However the poor thing, a large manta ray, meant them no harm. It had gotten wrapped up in a fishing net that was cutting into its flesh. According to the divers, it seemed like it sought them out for assistance.
“There are no words to describe this feeling,” Monteiro told 9News Australia.
Thompson was nearest and began unhooking the animal from the binding net.
After it was finally freed, the ray lingered near them for about 30 minutes before going on its way.
This video shows the whole heroic moment:
Monteiro, who has been diving since he was 12, said it was the first time he had seen a manta ray in person and called the interaction “profound.” He posted the video online in the hopes of battling the amount of illegal fishing in Costa Rica responsible for much more tragic endings for other aquatic wildlife.