But, the fact is, this species is in steady decline. The two most detrimental issues to them are the destruction of the sea grasses and underwater habitats they need for feeding, and the numerous injurious deaths caused by boaters who don't watch where they are going, or don't follow the watch their speed while traveling the Florida waterways. I have met a number of rescued manatees with horrible and permanent disfigurement and scars thanks to motor boats. It's terribly sad, because these animals truly are one of the most gentle and sweet creatures I've had the pleasure of meeting. I've been approached by several wild manatees in my day who just wanted to check me out and see what I was doing in their water. I've hand fed rescued manatees who have been through all kinds of hell and still don't mind letting a stranger feed and scratch them.
Now, manatees are in need of your help. There is a proposed dredging project on our gulf coast that keeps coming back to haunt those of us trying to help protect manatee habitats. If allowed to pass, this proposed project in Pasco County will cut a huge swath straight through Fillman Bayou, one of the best feeding grounds that manatees and many other species depend on to survive. For what? For another huge resort and more marina space, which according to the locals, is not really necessary. This proposal was already fought via petition and voted down once, but as seems to be the way any more, those proposing it have changed a few small things, and are resubmitting it again in hopes that we wouldn't notice it getting slipped through this time. We have until September 19th to sign the petition and help save manatee habitat. Please, won't you take the time to go read a little further and sign the easy petition? Every voice counts! I'm sure the manatees would thank you if they could.