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Florida

Explore the Everglades to Witness the Endangered Manatee

The manatee, Florida’s state marine mammal, is a fascinating aquatic creature. It is known for its gentle sloth-like movements due to their large size.

Manatees have grayish brown, thick wrinkly skin. The structure of their bodies helps them to navigate the shallow water, specifically the front flippers, and flat tails. The front flippers heal them to steer and crawl when needed as the flat tail manages their speed. The average adult manatee is about 10 feet long and can weigh from 800 to over 1500 pounds. The Manatee can be found in many of Florida’s warmer and shallow rivers, bays, canals and other coastal waters. These gentle giant’s grazing habits play an essential part in underwater plant growth in their habitats. Manatees are herbivores, but have molars to grind up their food. Over time, their teeth wear down and fall out from the grinding, however, they grow new replacement teeth. This process takes place repeatedly over their 50 to 60 year life span.

Manatees

Manatees are mammals so they must surface for air to breathe. The manatee’s lungs are the length of two- thirds of its body length. They pop up as frequent to every 30 seconds to staying submerged to up to 20 minutes. They tend to only swim at a rate of 3 to 5 miles per hour. While the manatee has quite a long lifespan, they still remain an endangered species. In Florida, there are said to be approximately 6,000 manatees that inhabit various bodies of waters. Because of their low population, It is a rare and special occasion to encounter a manatee.

Manatee Eco-Tours

If a manatee sighting isn’t on your itinerary when visiting Florida,  it should be. The best wildlife tour in Southwest Florida is Manatee Eco-Tours. While they can't guarantee you will see a manatee, you have at least a 90 percent chance one will come close to the boat. The Eco Tours excitement doesn’t stop with the manatees.

You will also get a chance to experience alligators, dolphins, sharks and other everglade waterfowl. In fact, the tour is a 1 ½ hour personal boat tour to remote and secret manatee hideouts.

Looking for more than an eco-tour when looking to spot a manatee? No problem. Double R’s Fishing and Tour company can offer you just that. They are located in Naples Florida where the manatee can be found year around. You will not only learn interesting facts on the trip, but you will also experience unique and fascinating wildlife. They have a variety of tours available for you to choose from.


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