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About This Animal
- Manatees aren't the shyest
of animals. Many will come right up to a human for a belly rub!
- USES FOR FLIPPERS: A
manatee's flippers have many uses.
- Allows them to hold onto food
- Hang onto other manatees
- Wipe dirt or sand from its
- BIG EATERS: One
manatee can eat over 100 pounds of food each day!
- THEIR OWN WAY OF
TALKING: Manatees communicate with each other through squeaks,
chirps, and squeals. In addition, they nuzzle each other's noses,
hug each other with their flippers, and even greet each other by
- FRIENDLY BEASTS:
Manatees are gentle, peaceful animals with only some people as their
enemies. Some manatees are killed by people for their meat.
Other threats: motor boats and fishing hooks. And even
though they are slow creatures, they are graceful swimmers.
Sometimes you'll see two of them swimming together!
- POWERFUL RELATIVES:
Manatees are related to elephants. They even have flat nails on
their flappers like the toenails of an elephant!
- WHERE CAN I FIND A
MANATEE?: You can find manatees in West Indian (Jamaican), West
African, and South American waters. Often, they come up to the
warm rivers, lakes, and springs of Florida.
- MOM, I'M HUNGRY!: Baby
manatees stay with their mother for one to two years and nurse from an
unusual place: on nipples in the mom's arm pits!
- THE MANATEE MERMAID
MYTH!: Many of the world's early sailors thought the manatees
they saw were actually the mermaids they heard about in stories!
Even Christopher Columbus thought manatees were mermaids...although he
admitted they weren't as pretty as ones he'd seen in paintings.
manatee receiving his honorary belly rub.