florida wildlife officials say some manatee food growing
A manatee floats in the warm water of a Florida Power & Light discharge canal, Monday, Jan. 31, 2022, in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. Rob Hale, a co-owner of the Boston Celtics, is donating $2 million toward protecting the Florida manatees and their habitat following two seasons of record-breaking manatee mortalities in the state. Fox Rock Foundation, a family charity overseen by Hale and his wife, Karen, will give $1 million each to the nonprofits Fish & Wildlife Foundation of Florida and Save the Manatee Club, the groups announced Tuesday, May 17. Credit: AP Photo/Lynne Sladky, File

Wildlife officials working to prevent threatened Florida manatees from starving to death say they’re encouraged that some of the marine mammals’ favorite food is growing naturally in a key area.

Seagrasses have been found growing recently in small areas of the Indian River Lagoon along Florida’s east coast where chronic pollution has wiped out much of it, officials said on a Wednesday conference call.

“We take it as a positive there is seagrass growing, “said Ron Mezich of the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission. “What that means long-term, we have no idea.”

The lack of seagrass forage during winter months has triggered an unprecedented die-off of manatees, including a record of more than 1,100 last year. The deaths recorded so far in 2022 are at 551, according to commission statistics.

The FWC and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service in March completed an experimental program that fed manatees more than 202,000 pounds (91,600 kilograms) of donated lettuce near a power plant where the animals gather during colder months. Officials say a similar program is in the works for the coming winter.

“We aren’t ruling out other locations,” Mezich said.

As of Wednesday, FWC officials said there were 92 rescued manatees being treated at rehabilitation centers around the country—most of them in Florida including critical care facilities at SeaWorld in Orlando and the Jacksonville Zoo and Gardens.

Jon Wallace of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service said the new seagrass growth is positive but the plants could easily be wiped out by a sunlight-choking summer algae bloom. Fully restoring seagrass and improving water quality will take years, he added.

“It is just going to be a long process,” Wallace said.

People interested in assisting the manatee program can donate to a FWC-affiliated organization. Distressed manatees can be reported by calling a hotline at 888-404-FWCC (888-404-3922).

There are only an estimated 7,520 of the animals in the wild today, according to the state wildlife commission.

Manatees are gentle round-tailed giants, sometimes known as sea cows, and weigh as much as 1,200 pounds (550 kilograms) and live as long as 65 years or so. Manatees are also Florida’s official state marine mammal.

© 2022 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed without permission.

Citation: Florida wildlife officials say some manatee food growing (2022, May 25) retrieved 25 May 2022 from https://phys.org/news/2022-05-florida-wildlife-manatee-food.html This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.

Keyword: Florida wildlife officials say some manatee food growing

TECH'S NEWS RELATED

Fermi's ground-breaking figure: How the radial wave function transformed physics

Neutron elastic and inelastic cross sections in paraffin. Credit: The European Physical Journal H (2022). DOI: 10.1140/epjh/s13129-022-00042-z One way to better understand an atom is to shoot a particle at it and infer the atom’s properties based on how the particle bounces off it. In the mid-1930s, the physicist ...

View more: Fermi's ground-breaking figure: How the radial wave function transformed physics

Discovery of the largest natural carbon onions on Earth

(a) Tectonically deformed coal with large-scale irregular friction mirror planes for sample XGZ; (b) fractures and friction mirror planes in sample QK; (c) well-developed friction mirror planes in sample TX10; (d) loose small coal particles in sample TX11; (e) scratches in sample TX23; (f) small-scale friction mirror planes in ...

View more: Discovery of the largest natural carbon onions on Earth

Android vs. iPhone: Android fans reveal why they’ll never switch

For as long as there are only two major mobile operating systems to choose from, users will have strong opinions about them. Every few months, we like to check in on the war between iPhone and Android fans. Each OS has features and functionality that the other can’t match. ...

View more: Android vs. iPhone: Android fans reveal why they’ll never switch

Vivo X Fold+ arrives to overcome the Xiaomi Mix Fold2

Vivo X Fold+ specifications Gizchina News of the week The new fancy colorway and pricing For some, it’s a little intriguing to see Vivo launching another foldable smartphone. After all, the company’s first take into the segment came less than six months ago. Well, with the arrival of the ...

View more: Vivo X Fold+ arrives to overcome the Xiaomi Mix Fold2

Google Fitbit users will be forced to migrate to Google Accounts

Fitbit account will have to merge with the Google account Gizchina News of the week Google refuses to share costs with telecom operators Google objects Google will soon start requiring Fitbit wearable device users to migrate from Fitbit accounts to Google accounts. As of now, it appears that the ...

View more: Google Fitbit users will be forced to migrate to Google Accounts

Correcting peers is key in small-group learning

Timelines of small group work. Group work timelines are represented as bar graphs with time (in minutes) on the x-axis. The timelines show how each group spent each breakout session. White sections of the timeline indicate when groups were silent. Black sections of the timeline indicate when groups were ...

View more: Correcting peers is key in small-group learning

Measuring the temperature inside cells

Temperature change in brown fat cells: Mitochondria and Lipid Droplets. Credit: POSTECH Organelles inside cells constantly serve specific functions in the same way that individual departments handle certain tasks in an organization. Cellular processes alter the amount of heat organelles generate, but it is not easy to monitor these ...

View more: Measuring the temperature inside cells

Molecular-level design strategy could hold the key to boosting commercial hydrogen production

Comparison between the reaction mechanisms of a hybrid system with a conventional heterostructure, and the single-phase system with molecular-level proton acceptors developed by the researchers. Credit: Nanjing University of Information Science and Technology. Our excessive consumption of fossil fuels is responsible for some of the major societal challenges we ...

View more: Molecular-level design strategy could hold the key to boosting commercial hydrogen production

Impact of sea-level fluctuations on redox-sensitive trace-element enrichment patterns in marine sediments

LEGO Reveals Its Largest ‘Mandalorian’ Razor Crest Starship Set

Say Goodbye to Your Fitbit Account in 2023

Select Auto Protect: Reviews, Cost, Plans

Our Favorite Plant Gifts for the Office and Home

It’s DART’s big day: Asteroid collision just hours away

Asteroid Ryugu was once part of a much larger parent body, new results find

Invasive stink bug habitat could expand greatly with climate change

NVIDIA GeForce Experience beta fixes Windows 11 22H2 gaming issues

Realme DIZO partners OEL to make smartwatches, audio wearables in India

Tamil Nadu cabinet clears ordinance to ban online gaming

Apple Commenced Producing iPhone 14 In India, Sooner Than Planned

OTHER TECH NEWS

;