DEC 03, 2019 5:00 PM PST

Florida's Manatees Are a Conservation Success Story

WRITTEN BY: Anthony Bouchard

Manatees are be a common sight for Floridians who reside close to rivers and other natural waterways, but there was once a time when that wasn’t the case. These slow-moving marine mammals are somewhat of a conservation success story, with local populations coming off endangered species lists following years’ worth of stringent conservation measures.

Albeit large animals, an apparent trait of being distantly related to elephants, manatees aren’t easily seen at sea level. They only breach the surface when coming up for air, and upon disappearing beneath the water’s surface, their bland body color seemingly camouflages with the surroundings. An unfortunate result of being so difficult to spot is being inadvertently struck by oncoming boat traffic, a problem that left many manatees scarred by boat propellers and others left for dead.

After Florida’s manatee population dropped to below 1,000 specimens, conservationists knew they had to do something to turn that around. Boat speed limits were imposed and strictly enforced, and safe areas were later designated to keep manatees out of harm’s way. These efforts proved effective as manatee populations slowly creeped above 8,000, officially declassifying the animals as endangered.

Related: Catfish are harassing Florida's manatees

Today, manatee populations are still carefully monitored, however people can now swim with the gentle giants in their natural habitat. Manatees have slowly become one of Florida’s greatest tourist attractions.

About the Author
  • Fascinated by scientific discoveries and media, Anthony found his way here at LabRoots, where he would be able to dabble in the two. Anthony is a technology junkie that has vast experience in computer systems and automobile mechanics, as opposite as those sound.
You May Also Like
JAN 26, 2020
Plants & Animals
JAN 26, 2020
The Life of an Arctic Squirrel
There is no overstating the fact that the Arctic Tundra is a cold and unforgiving place. There are few plants or animals that can survive in this extremely...
JAN 31, 2020
Health & Medicine
JAN 31, 2020
Medicinal Marijuana May Not Aid Sleep Problems Long Term
A new study published in BMJ Supportive & Palliative Care suggests that medical marijuana may not aid sleep problems resulting from chronic p...
FEB 09, 2020
Genetics & Genomics
FEB 09, 2020
Mosquitoes are Driven to Search for Heat in the Hunt for Meals
Mosquitoes can be dangerous disease vectors, and they infect and kill hundreds of thousands of people with illnesses like dengue, malaria, and West Nile Virus....
FEB 17, 2020
Plants & Animals
FEB 17, 2020
How a Spider Builds its Web
Just about everyone has seen a spider web at some point in their life, but have you ever wondered how a spider builds such a strong and perfect web? The pr...
MAR 06, 2020
Drug Discovery & Development
MAR 06, 2020
Scorpion-derived Proteins Deliver Arthritis Treatment
New research published in the journal Science Translational Medicine shows that that a scorpion-derived proteins could soon provide relief for arthritis. &...
MAR 17, 2020
Plants & Animals
MAR 17, 2020
The Common Roly Poly Isn't Actually an Insect
Most people assume that pill bugs, which are more colloquially referred to as ‘roly polies,’ are insects. But while you might find these little...
Loading Comments...