Manatees are also known as sea cows. They are mammals. They are related to elephants. The West Indian Manatee is found in Central Florida along The Gulf of Mexico and the Caribbean Coasts. They are a blackish, grayish color. They are about 8 to 15 feet long. They weigh about 440 to 1,300 pounds. They eat seaweed and at zoos they eat hearts of the lettuce. They are one of the three largest species.
A West Indian Manatee usually stays within it's small home range. The manatees live in a small group of families. Manatees mate in February and March. They live in salt water or fresh water. After about 6 months, 1 calf is born.
The manatees are endangered because of pesticides and motor boats. 1,000 to 2,000 sailors killed manatees for food. Soon they were endangered. Also, when it rains, it helps to pollute the water. Since the sand is to thin it makes more pollution. They are dying from speed boats because they get run over. The boats should start to look out for manatees and go slow.
A human is a predator to a manatee. Meat, oil and blubber are the things hunters kill manatees for. Manatees are still hunted in the Carribean and South America. They are making houses and all the chemicals are building up and the manatees are dying.
The goverment of the U.S.A. is trying to protect the manatees. They have a epidemic that is called The Red Tide that is making the water warmer and they are all dying at once.
We can help the manatees by: stopping people who hunt them, posting speed limits for boats, and in some places there shouldn't be motors on boats. In some places there shouldn't be any boats except for canoes. You can also make posters telling people that the manatees are endangered. Those are the ways people can help them.