West Indian Manatees are commonly found in shallow coastal
areas, shallow rivers, springs, bays, estuaries, canals and lagoons. West
generally require water that is at least one meter in depth.
occupy fresh and salt water habitats.
Indian manatees typically reside in regions of North America, Central
America and the West Indies. Specifically located in Florida and
They prefer a water temperature of about 68 degrees Fahrenheit. They cannot
survive cold weather. When water temperatures drop below 20 degrees Celsius they begin
to move towards warmer water.
Some West Indian Manatees make long seasonal migrations
south to avoid cold weather temperatures. Some may make local
movements where the temperature of the water is constant such as
industrial effluents and natural ground water discharges. Humans
have actually led to an increase in a suitable habitats for manatees
with the release of warm water from power plants and factories into the
rivers and flood channels. Large groups of animals may be
found at the specific locations during the winter.
Indian Manatees seem to favor costal habitats that
are protected from heavy wave action. They seem to prefer areas in
still or moderately flowing water such as effluent canals, tidal creeks,
spring runs, large slow-flowing rivers. West Indian Manatees will
in highly urbanized areas if there is a source of food and as long as
excessive harassment does not occur.