Posted by: Doc Bruce | May 21, 2008

May Manatee Madness

We were recently treated to a rare sight on the east end of Sanibel Island. A group of manatees came very close to the beach to mate. They stayed there all day just witihn 10 or 15 feet of shore. When manatees mate, a single female emits a chemical cue that she is receptive to males and they come from miles aroud.

This mating group consisted of one female and 15-17 males. The males jockeyed to get access to the female. What a wonderful chance to observe this endangered species congregate and mate. The gestation period of female manatees is about one year, so if all goes well, we will have one more next year.

Pretty good day for a field trip! Come explore the ocean with us.

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