Bookmarkable URL:http://hdl.handle.net/10217/54578

Scientific Classification

Kingdom:Animalia
Phylum:Chordata
Class:Mammalia
Order:Sirenia
Family:Trichechidae
Genus:Trichechus
Genus species:Trichechus inunguis

Animal Characteristics

Head-Body Length:2.5-3 m
Weight:300-500 kg
Identification:The manatee is gray with white patches on its chest and abdomen. Its body is covered with fine hair and bristles.
Habitat:Lakes, oxbows and lagoons with dense vegetation
Diet:Herbivore: aquatic vegetation
Reproduction:Manatees have no distinct breeding season. The gestation period is about one year, and only one young is born at a time. Manatees can live for more than 30 years.
Manatees live in small groups of 4-8 individuals, with the strongest bonds being between a mother and her offspring.
Behavior:Manatees are active during the day and at night. Even though they live their entire lives underwater, manatees still need to breathe air like all mammals.
Status:Endangered: pollution, often seriously injured by boat propellers, hunted by Amazonian Indians, hides are used to make water hoses and machine belts
Interesting Facts:A manatee may go weeks without eating during the dry season. Sailors used to think that manatees were mermaids. Manatees are also known as sea cows.

Other Information

Geographic:Central South America Date:1965-09 Subjects:sea mammal
Manatee
Manatees
Sirenia
Afrotherians
Mammals
Vertebrates
Chordata
Marine mammals