More Than 6,000 Manatees Spotted in Florida—A Record
The numbers support other observations that the endangered mammal's chances seem to be improving, the U.S. government says.
There may be good news for Florida’s favorite sea cows.
The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission recently reported a record minimum count of 6,250 manatees in its annual aerial survey of the state’s waters, which includes sites with large manatee gatherings. This breaks the last record of 5,077 manatees in 2010.
Though this is just a minimum count and not necessarily a trend, the discovery seems to support growing data that suggests the endangered marine mammal may be bouncing back.
In February, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service proposed reclassifying the West Indian manatee from “endangered” to “threatened” under the Endangered Species Act. (See amazing pictures of manatees.)
The proposal is available for public review and comment until