Here in the great state of Florida, we love manatees.
So on this special day, deemed Manatee Appreciation Day by the Internet, we invite you on a tour of what exactly makes these marine mammals so special.
First of all, they’re super smart.
Each year, Mote Marine’s two manatees, Hugh and Buffett, attempt to guess which team will come away as champion of the Super Bowl. They have a fairly good record: Buffett has chosen correctly 8 out of 10 times and Hugh has chosen correctly 6 out of 10 times. Mote’s manatees have also participated in research studies and are some of the most extensively trained manatees in the world. These guys know what they’re doing.
They’re health…ier than us.When you ask most children what they want as a special snack, they’ll give you a range of options–french fries, Oreos, chocolate cake. But not manatees. When Mote’s manatees, Hugh and Buffett, are rewarded for good work, they get the good stuff: apples, beets and carrots. If only we ate that well.
They’re in threat of getting off the endangered species list.
In January of 2016, U.S. Fish and Wildlife proposed declassifying the West Indian Manatee from endangered to threatened. Since that announcement, the federal agency has not yet released their final decision, but manatee conservationists have called for the organization to rethink its proposal. It comes at the same time as manatee deaths by watercraft have hit record highs.
Instead of supersonic hearing, they have a supersonic power of touch.Unfortunately for manatees, their sense of sight is, well, not that great. Navigating through the cloudy water using merely their eyes would be difficult for them, which is why they use their vibrissae, or the hairs on their face and body, to touch and sense their environment. A manatee can intuitively form impressions of their surroundings based on the little hairs on the body. Now if only our hairs were that powerful.
They’re lovable and fun.
Mostly we love manatees because, *sob*, they’re the best. They represent everything we love about Florida: they live in the water, they like to play and they’re tropical and beautiful.
Thanks, manatees, for being so great. We here at Unravel appreciate you so much.