Blog Prompt: Today is Penguin Awareness Day. What is the most unusual animal you have ever seen?
I guess that would have to be the manatee.Â One of natures kindest animals on the planet.Â You can see them at Homasassa Springs in Florida and they are just magnificent.Â I wanted to sit and just watch them swim and relax in the crystal clear spring waters.Â I’m so glad to know that Florida takes special precautions for these giant creatures to make sure they stay around.Â On June 8, 2006, The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission voted to reclassify the manatee on Florida’s list, to a “threatened” status in that state.Â On the Federal level thought, they are still on the endangered list.Â Man is its biggest predator with their boat propellers.
The average West Indian manatee weighs between 900-1200 pounds and swim about 3 – 5 mph.Â They emit a wide range of sounds used in communication, especially between cows and their calves, yet also between adults to maintain contact and during sexual and play behaviors. They may use taste and smell, in addition to sight, sound, and touch, to communicate. Manatees are capable of understanding discrimination tasks, and show signs of complex associated learning and advanced long term memory.Â They are herbivorves and eat over 60 varites of plant species.
Florida is about as far north as these mammals swim, wo we are very fortunate to see them so close to where we live.Â Fossil remains of manatee ancestors show they have inhabited Florida for about 45 million years.
So, if any of you happen to be in Florida, please check out the manatees.Â It’s something the whole family will enjoy.
I did a layout showing these wonderful creatures using Clever Crow Design’s kit called 1st Street.Â You can find it here.