Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission urges citizens to help stranded manatees
call the Wildlife Warning Hotline at 888-404-FWCC
(FWC) – One of our shorebird biologists ran into a stranded manatee, but knew it shouldn’t be pushed back and immediately called our hotline for help.
The Marine Mammal Response Team arrived and determined that the manatee had stranded due to low tide. With the help of the police, they kept her in the shade, performed a health check and waited with the manatee for the water level to rise, allowing her to swim out of the lagoon.
The Florida manatee (Trichechus manatus latirostris) is a native species found in many Florida waterways.
The Florida manatee population has now reached a low of 7,520 animals and as a result the species has been reclassified from Endangered to Threatened under the Federal Endangered Species Act. disappeared in May 2017.
Florida manatees are considered one of the state’s key species whose behavior can alert researchers to environmental and habitat changes that might otherwise go unnoticed in Florida’s waterways for long periods of time.
Please browse the manatee program web pages to learn more about this unique species at risk.
Florida manatees were first protected by Florida state law in 1893.
Manatees are protected by the Florida Manatee Sanctuary Act (§379.2431 (2), Florida Statutes) and are federally protected by the Marine Mammal Protection Act and the Endangered Species Act.
The FWC continues to protect and conserve manatees and their habitat through the Manatee Management Plan and programs implemented by the Habitat and Species Conservation Division (Species at Risk Management Section and Species at Risk Section). Conservation and Restoration of Aquatic Habitats), Fish and Wildlife Research Institute and Law Enforcement Division.
If you see an injured, dead, stranded, or sick manatee, text or email [email protected], call our Wildlife Alert hotline at 888-404-FWCC (3922).