‘One in a million’: Manta ray photobombs surfer at Florida beach

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TAMPA (WFLA) – A Florida photographer got the shot of a lifetime when a manta ray photobombed a surfer who was riding a wave.

Rusty Escandell told Nexstar’s WFLA he was at the beach Sunday with his son, near Patrick Space Force Base, and didn’t even realize what happened.

“I was photographing the surfer using burst mode and noticed a splash behind him but didn’t realize what it was until I reviewed the pictures once home,” Escandell said.

Escandell posted the photo to Facebook which has received hundreds of likes and shares on his profile and hundreds more when the Satellite Beach Community page shared the photo.

Escandell says he is glad the photo is bringing so much joy and awareness – even impressing his two marine biologist daughters.

According to NOAA, the average manta ray can grow up to 23 feet long and weigh up to 5,300 pounds.

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