23 Mar

5 unique animals you can encounter while diving in Bali

While scuba diving in Bali, there is thousands of creatures you may encounter underwater, but some of them are really special and here are some of our favourites!


Nudibranch can be found all over Bali all year round. They are a group of of soft-bodied, marine gastropod molluscs basically sea slugs to most divers. Nudibranch come in a ridiculous array of colors, patterns and shapes. There bright colors have several different functions depending on the species, some its for camouflage, it can serve as a warning to predators that they are toxic and also to mimic other less edible creatures. All diving sites in Bali have them…you just have to spot them!

Manta Rays

Manta rays one of Balis most popular attractions. On almost every day of the year they can be found on some dive sites at Nusa Penida at the cleaning stations. Mantas are divided in two species, the Reef Manta (Manta alfredi) and the Oceanic Manta (Manta birostris). The larger oceanic mantas reach up to 7m across and 1350kg. Despite their size mantas only eat tiny zooplankton. When mantas find a group of zooplankton they will herd it in to a ball before swimming through the middle mouth wide open.


Rhinopias are a genus of scorpion fish found rarely all over Bali but slightly more commonly in the padang Bai area. They are well camouflaged ambush predators that rarely move ocence they have a good hunting spot. They don’t swim in open water they prefer to walk on their pectoral fins. Rhinopias dont have swim bladders like most fish because due to their lifestyle its unnecessary and would slow down the speed they can strike at prey.

Flying Gurnards

Flying Gurnards are unusual bottom dwelling fish found all over Bali. Flying Gurnards are part of the same family of flying fish however their wings aren’t used out of the water. They use their wings as defence mechanism when startled they open up their wings and start to swim away from danger. The wings have large sharp spins running through them making the Gurnard into a less pleasant meal. The pattern on the wings is also part of its defence if looks like eyes making the Gurnard seam much larger than it is in the hope of scaring the predator away.

Mola Mola

dive centre nusa penida mola mola

Ocean sunfish also known as Mola Mola are often seen in Bali. They can be seen year round but appear mainly around Agust to October with cooler currants. Mola tend to be seen around Nusa Penida where they come up from deep water to relatively sallow 20m-40m to visit cleaning stations to get parasites removed. They grow up to 3.5m in length and can weight more than 1000Kg. Like the Manta Rays they are plankton feeders and cant close their mouths. Little else is known about them as they spend so much of their time at depths as deep as 600m.

Is there anything we left out that have seen or would like see let use now in the comments. If you would like to see any of these creatures come dive with us and our experienced staff can help you find them.

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