MANATEE APPRECIATION DAY
Manatee Appreciation Day on the Last Wednesday in March focuses the world’s attention on an herbivore with no known natural enemy.
Three species of manatees inhabit slow rivers, canals, saltwater bays, estuaries and coastal areas around the world. The Amazonian, West Indian, and American manatees have differing lifespans with the American manatee living the longest – up to 60 years. These gentle giants spend most of their time eating sleeping and traveling. They also spend most of their time underwater. However, since they are mammals, they must surface for air occasionally. They can remain submerged for about 20 minutes at a time and when they surface they are capable of replenishing 90 percent of the air in their lungs. By comparison, humans only replace about 10 percent.
More Manatee Facts:
- They are also called sea cows.
- Manatees are related to the elephant.
- Due to their immense size, (some weigh up to 1,200 pounds) they graze up to 8 hours a day.
- Manatees continually replace their teeth. A new set is always growing behind the current set of teeth.
As a migratory species, the American manatee inhabits the Florida waters during the winter and move as far north as Virginia and as far west as Texas in the summer months.
The most significant challenge manatees face today is the loss of habitat. Currently, there are approximately 3,200 manatees living in the United States.
HOW TO OBSERVE #ManateeAppreciationDay
Learn more about this amazing water mammal. Support saving their habitat, too.
Use #ManateeApprecicationDay to post on social media.
MANATEE APPRECIATION DAY HISTORY
National Day Calendar continues researching the origins of this appreciation day.
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