n the last century there were only a few hundred Florida manatees left, and as a result of that in 1973 they were put on the endangered list. Making them endangered helped and they began to flourish once again.
At the moment there are about over 6,000 Florida manatees in the wild, but should they be removed from the “endangered” list and moved to the “threatened” one. In the Caribbean region there are about 13,000, and with the ones in Florida, the US Fish and Wildlife service decided to change the status of Florida manatees from endangered to threaten. The reason for that was to make way for other species that need to be protected when placed on the “endangered” list.
How the Florida manatees have become endangered?
Well, as always the main reason for the extinction of many species is the human interference and not trying to keep the balance in nature. In the case of Florida manatees was the deaths caused by boat propellers, and the loss of their natural habitat. It is a fact that these root causes for making them endangered are not yet solved; the risk of their extinction is still high as it was before.
Regarding to their removal from the endangered list the Center For Biological Diversity stated the following: “… manatee numbers have never truly recovered, as the animals must contend with a barrage of manmade threats. Each year, about 87 manatees are killed by collisions with boats, the single greatest cause of premature mortalities. This is more than seven times (the) number of manatees that the Fish and Wildlife Service estimates can be killed without impairing the species’ recovery. Meanwhile, boating in Florida is at an all-time high and increasing…” and “in 2017, the (US Fish & Wildlife) Service downlisted the manatee from “endangered” to “threatened” despite the fact that 2016 had been the deadliest-ever year for manatees.”
This is the opinion of many other environmental groups believing that the Florida manatees should not have been removed from the list as they still need the protection considering the fact that the real threats are still not removed. They believe that their number will go down once again and that they will again be at the verge of extinction.
However, everything is not that bad as the number of this species has risen and reached an estimation of 13,000 thriving in the Caribbean and Southeast US, and about half of it are believed to be Florida manatees. Considering the bad situation in the seventies this is really good news and great progress in preserving this species.
Making them endangered helped a lot offering all the services for preserving their kind. Still it is a shame that we have limited resources for preserving many species on our planet and because of that there has to be persistent reassessment of which species to be removed from the list so that another species could be protected.
Would the Florida manatees manage to survive although the threats for their survival still exist? We can only hope that they will somehow manage to survive and keep their number and remain on the “threatened” list.