Manu are dangerous shark-like creatures that live in the Southern Seas. They are sleek, colourful and have elaborately decorative fins, but they are deadly hunters. The Empire of Splendour called these creatures "Shark Spirits", believing that they work for the Divine Minister of the Iridescent Pearl as enforcers and bodyguards.
The Moa-Ruaki have a similar belief. They call them "Manu-Pako-Mani", meaning "Teeth of Ko" (Ko is their creator god). They believe them to have a similar role, meting out Ko's punishment on mis-doers. In Moa-Ruaki myths, however, the Manu-Pako-Mani are disobedient, and often go off and attack things for their own pleasure. In some stories they are said to be made from disobedient humans, hence their innate unreliable nature.
In fact, most manu encountered are little more than animals, with one exception - they have the ability to influence emotion. Manu can emit empathic waves, which they can sometimes use to lure prey towards them. They then change the tone of their empathic waves to induce fear. Manu seem to find fearful prey more tasty, and if one is able to remain calm they sometimes pass by without feeding. They eat any meat, although the more intelligent the better (due to the richer range of emotions). Because of this, gloppies of all species find manu to be a great problem and will hunt them down whenever they can.
They work in hunting groups of 3-12, and gather to mate twice a year (roughly 4th and 8th Month by the Imperial Official Calendar) in areas around the Tuuma Strait. During this time, those waters are avoided like the plague. The females are larger (anything from 20-30 ft long), more aggressive and are the obvious leaders. The males are smaller, roughly 10-16 ft. They remain around the spawning grounds to guard the eggs and "sharns", as young manu are known.