A stunning video shot in the Philippines shows a massive manta ray swimming among a group of divers, seeming to seek assistance with a barnacle-encrusted fishing line tangled on her wing. The divers managed to cut her free, and she reportedly swam below the group even after they’d returned up to the surface.
“I am convinced she stayed with us for help as this was the longest and closest interaction during the week of diving,” Jane Headley, one of the divers involved, wrote on her page.
This isn’t the only instance of an animal approaching divers for help with an injury -- this incredible video shows a wild dolphin with fishing gear wrapped around her fin in Hawaii approach a group of divers, seeming to seek help with the line:
In another remarkable episode, a humpback whale was freed from fishing line by boaters -- and he stuck around to breach into the air right after.
Of course, it’s worth mentioning that it’s never a good idea to approach wildlife simply to touch them, because it can desensitize them to human interaction, potentially making them vulnerable to hunters or fishers.