Extinct Animal : Florida Manatee
Trichechus manatus latirostris
Although recorded for the Carolinas, Georgia, and Texas, the manatee’s centre of abundance in the United States was Florida where it frequented streams and brackish estuaries and fed solely on vegetation. Early depletion of this aquatic mammal began with hunting by natives for hides, meat, and oil. Later, the loss of habitat to coastal development, the use of herbicides to control aquatic vegetation, and injuries from power boats all contributed to its decline.
Although legally protected, the animal’s numbers are low as it continues to survive in Everglades National Park and a refuge near Tampa. Other populations of Manatees in the coastal Caribbean are probably declining.