Manatee Appreciation Day 2023: We observe Manatee Appreciation Day on the last Wednesday of March, which falls on March 29 this year, to bring attention to the marine cows that are rapidly becoming extinct due to pollution, climate change, and hunting. Did you know that manatees can weigh up to 1,200 pounds but subsist solely on seagrass? And they have no natural enemies other than humans? This day is observed to honor, learn more about, and protect the distended bean-bag resembling creatures from human-caused harm.
HISTORY OF MANATEE APPRECIATION DAY
Their egg-shaped skulls and flat tails closely resemble those of elephants, with which they are closely related. They are between 10 and 13 feet long, weigh nearly 1,300 pounds, and, despite their bulky appearance, can move or swim very rapidly when necessary. Manatees reside in slow rivers, saltwater bays, estuaries, canals, and other coastal regions, resting, feeding, and migrating. They are carefree and only need to surface occasionally to replenish their oxygen supplies.
It is regrettable that manatees have become endangered in recent years, primarily as a result of their habitat loss. Consisting of only three distinct species — West African, Amazonian, and West Indian — aquatic animals are frequently killed for their flesh, the destruction of waterways, and negligent ship collisions.
New developments destroy their natural nesting grounds, pollute the water with sewage, manure, and fertilizers, and cause algal outbreaks. Manatees frequently collide fatally with boats and ships in the shallow waters where they must reside to eat seagrass, their only source of nutrition.
Save the Manatee Club, the world’s foremost manatee conservation organization, was founded in 1981 by singer-songwriter Jimmy Buffet and former U.S. senator Bob Graham. The organisation protects manatees and their habitat. This holiday was created to support the organisation’s mission of rescuing slow-moving marine cows from thoughtless, lethal human activities.
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HOW TO OBSERVE NATIONAL MANATEE APPRECIATION DAY
Explore the manatee in Orlando.
If you live in Orlando, visit SeaWorld or Blue Spring State Park to see the Florida manatee. Consider filming the sea cows as they emerge to create a lasting memory.
Share the news
Support the cause of the holiday by using the hashtags #SaveTheManatee or #ManateeAppreciationDay to share news about the manatee’s endangered status, its causes, and simple entertaining facts.
Contribute to manatee conservation
Despite the fact that you can only appreciate the animal from a distance, some conservation organisations and clubs are working assiduously on the ground to help the cause. Donate as much as you can so that they can intensify their efforts.
Five MANATEE FACTS THAT WILL BLOW YOUR MIND
They have enormous lungs.
Their lungs are two-thirds the size of their complete body and have the capacity to replenish oxygen by up to 90%.
They consume a lot of food.
Manatee subsist on seagrass and spend eight hours per day grazing to maintain their weight.
They repeatedly replace molars
In a manatee’s mouth, there is always a new set of canines growing behind the existing ones.
They breathe through their nostrils and have no external ears.
Their mouth is only used for chewing seagrass, not for respiration, and despite having no visible ear structure, they have excellent hearing.
They were considered “sexy” mermaids.
Long before they were identified as manatees, explorers and mariners mistakenly believed the animals to be mermaids.
MANATEE APPRECIATION DAY DATES