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Manatees Need Loving,Too

USA | Wednesday, 18 November 2020 | Views [48]

My Favorite Manatee

My Favorite Manatee

IT’S NOT EASY BEING A MANATEE.  First off is the identity crisis.  We are not—and never have been—mermaids, despite what old-timey sailors may have you believe.  They must have been at sea way t-o-o long.

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        Not even close!

Yes, we are aquatic mammals that live mostly underwater and have to come up for air.  But we are not kissin’ cousins to whales and dolphins.  Not seals and walruses, either.  Our closest kin just happen to be elephants.  ‘Struth.

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         Distant Cousins

And like our long lost cousins, we’re pretty big—some of us weigh more than half a ton.   We may look slow and clumsy but we can swim faster than Michael Phelps when there’s a need for speed, thanks to our paddle-shaped tail.  We’re pretty much introverts, except during mating season when several guy manatees bunch up around a chick manatee.  And don’t you hate it when that happens!  Otherwise, when you do see several of us together—an aggregation—we’re probably sharing a warm spot like people do in a hot tub or a meal like in a good rib joint ‘cept we prefer plants to barbecue—a lot of plants, like 100 pounds a day.

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  Who's the Dummy?

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                             He doesn't look too smart

                                                   nn

                                                         Where the livin' is easy

We ain’t stupid, either—maybe just as smart as dolphins and sea lions.  Smarter, even, ‘cause we live right near John and Connie and you won’t see many of us performing at SeaWorld!  But you guys just won’t give us a break.  You keep destroying the mangroves and friggin’ up the water.  And your boats are killing us, man.  Literally!  Those marks on my back aren’t tats, Jack.  They are scars from boat propellers.  Then there are the fishing nets and red tides and . . . 

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                     I tell you, we don’t get no respect.  

 

 

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