Manatee Awareness Month
Make Way for Manatees !
by Corinna of TheFrogBag
The problem is simply that humans like to go fast. And often they don't watch where they're going. Even when manatees see these boats coming they can't physically get out of the way fast enough to avoid a strike. Their paddle-like tails can propel them at up to 20 miles an hour in short bursts, but 3 miles an hour is more typical. And many boats go much faster than 20 miles an hour.
Feel ready to take on propaganda like that? The Save the Manatee Club: http://savethemanatee.org is a great resource.
If you live near a body of water that might shelter manatees you can have them send you a snazzy free waterproof sign that says “Please Slow – Manatees Below”. Posting it will warn folks not to speed and may even spark a conversation.
But what if you’re the one boating? There are plenty of things you can do to reduce the chances of a manatee collision. For instance, wearing polarizing sunglasses cuts the glare on the water and allows you to see large objects (or sea cows) beneath the surface.
Manatees are bizarre, majestic, gentle, and intriguing. Related to elephants, they can live upwards of 60 years in the wild and have no natural predators. Even so, something as avoidable as boat strikes may drive them to extinction.
So spread the word.
Make someone aware of manatees today!