ALL ABOUT MANATEES
A manatee is a mammal. Man has known about the manatee since the early 1800s. The manatee is an endangered species because the supply of hydrilla ( a plant that manatees feed on) is limited. Also, there are many boating accidents involving manatees.
The average manatee is about ten to twelve feet long and weighs 1500 to 1800 pounds. Adult manatees have been known to grow to lengths of thirteen feet and weigh over 3500 pounds. Manatees are capable of living sixty years or more. One manatee living in captivity is now more than forty-eight years old.
When manatees are born, they are a gray-black color.in color. Within a month, they change to gray. Adult manatees range in color from gray to brownish-gray. Manatees that are found in fresh water often have algae growing on their backs. Manatees that are found in salt water often heave barnacles attached to them. Modern manatees evolved in the tropics and subtropics. The manatees have very little body fat. Manatees are herbivores. Manatees migrate in the winter, usually November to March.
The manatees travel up to twenty miles per hour in small periods of time, usually they travel three to five miles per hour.Manatees travel in water that are three to seven feet deep.Manatees are found in both salt and fresh water.Manatees also can be found in water ten to sixteen feet deep. Manatees are rarely seen in water over twenty feet deep.
Manatees feed on sea grass, marine vegetation, manatee grass, turtle grass, shoal grass,and widgeon grass. They also feed on Hydrilla, eelgrass, water hyacinth, and water lettuce. The last aerial survey of the Florida manatee population was done in February of 1997.The survey showed population of two-thousand nine Save the Manatee Club is in favor of prop guards,and there are a number of manufacturers of them in Florida. Most manatee deaths are caused by water craft collisions.
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