Awesome Footage: Mobula Rays Soaring Through the Air

In the natural world, finding a boyfriend or girlfriend requires showing off. For mobula rays, that means leaping high into the air and doing a massive bellyflop.
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And you thought the bellyflop was just for fun?

In the Sea of Cortez, mobula rays gather up their strength to get out of the sea, soar as high as they can, and then crash back to the water with the biggest bellyflop possible.

Scientists are not certain why mobula rays do this, but it is believed to be a mating ritual, or a way of getting rid of parasites. It’s mostly the males who do the bellyflopping, but some of the gals get into the action, too.

Mobula rays are smaller cousins of the manta ray and are also known as devil rays or flying rays.

You can see the spectacle in this mesmerizing slo-mo video from the BBC.