Manatee News

International Manatee Day is September 7th

The Club also produces a family-friendly outdoor sign to teach the public “manatee manners” and help stop manatee harassment. The signs are distributed to state, municipal, and county parks; marinas; and other sites where human/manatee interaction can be a problem. (Photo by Terry Nearing.)

For further information, contact:
Janice Nearing, Director of Public Relations
Phone: (407) 539-0990
E-mail: jnearing@savethemanatee.org

Note: High resolution jpegs (300 dpi) of manatee images or the Club’s public awareness materials are available upon request.

For Immediate Release
: August 22, 2014

In honor of International Manatee Day, and to heighten public awareness about this endangered species, Save the Manatee Club reminds Floridians and visitors to the Sunshine State to watch out for manatees on the crowded waterways and also be equipped to help protect the slow-moving marine mammals.

The Club produces free bright yellow waterproof boating banners with the message, “Please Slow: Manatees Below.” Displaying the banner helps alert other boaters to manatees in the area. Free shoreline property signs, weatherproof boat decals, and waterway cards that feature manatee protection tips in English, French, Spanish, and German, are available, too. The Club also produces a family-friendly outdoor sign to teach the public “manatee manners” and help stop manatee harassment. The signs are distributed to state, municipal, and county parks; marinas; and other sites where human/manatee interaction can be a problem.

“We have a wide variety of programs, both in America and in other countries manatees inhabit,” says Patrick Rose, Save the Manatee Club’s Executive Director. “We continue to expand our programs which include funding more rescue, rehabilitation, and release efforts in the U.S. and abroad, advocating for the strongest possible protection measures for both endangered manatees and their aquatic habitat, and continuing to raise public awareness with the Club’s free outreach materials.”

Rose explains that one of the Club’s most pressing tasks right now is to ensure manatees are not stripped of their current federal endangered species protections. “The Pacific Legal Foundation, representing anti-manatee interests in Crystal River, Florida, filed a petition earlier this year with the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service to change the status of the manatee with the goal of rolling back much-needed protection measures, despite very high manatee mortality over the last several years. Last year alone, 17% of the known population died in a single year from all causes. Even with their current protective status, manatees continue to die in vast numbers in Florida’s dangerous waters – just imagine how much worse it would be if protection measures were lifted. Together we must resist efforts to prematurely downlist the manatee because this is about political rather than scientific reasons.”

Save the Manatee Club is an award-winning international nonprofit conservation organization in operation since 1981 when it was co-founded by singer/songwriter Jimmy Buffett and Bob Graham, former Florida Governor and U.S. Senator. It is the recognized worldwide leader in manatee education and conservation efforts.

Send requests for the Club’s free public awareness materials via email to education@savethemanatee.org or by calling toll free at 1-800-432-JOIN (5646).
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