The manatee is a slow moving mammal found in Florida. It is also known as the "sea cow" although it is more closely related to the elephant.
Living in water, they can hold their breaths for up to 20 minutes. They are plant eaters, and can eat up to 10% of their body weight in plant matter each day.
The West Indian manatee, along with two other manatee species, was endangered at one time, but in the last 18 months or so has been "upgraded" to threatened. Here are some fun facts about manatees. Their only real enemy in the wild is man.
They can be run over by boats - manatees are no match for boaters. In fact, the other day I was watching a rerun of the show Jeopardy and the champion that day was the man who helped write the "no wake" law in Florida. This law is necessary - over the years, enough manatees have been injured or killed in collisions with boats.
Humans in Florida have finally woken up to the importance of saving the manatee. In fact, during manatee season, swimming and boating is suspended within this park. Manatee season ended this year around March 28, but they will be back in the late fall.
Day 14 of the Ultimate Blog Challenge #blogboost and "M" day in the Blogging in #AtoZChallenge. My theme: "Florida-Outside the Theme Parks".
Tomorrow I'm "off" participating in Garden Bloggers Bloom Day but Monday I will return with my "N" post. Please join me then.