The Amazon Manatee


I spend my weekends volunteering at the Centro de Rescate Amazonico, a wildlife rescue center. Many key species of animals in the Amazon are currently in jeopardy due to the international demand for their hides, skins, and meat, and organizations like CREA help rescue and rehabilitate these animals so they can be released back into the Amazon. CREA focuses on the rescue and rehabilitation of manatees! It is really cool to volunteer with an organization doing such important work, and I LOVE spending time helping take care of the animals.

What does this creature or plant look like?:

The Amazon manatee has thin, wrinkled, brownish- or gray-colored skin, with fine hairs scattered over its body and a white chest patch. It is the smallest of the three species of manatee; however, males can still weigh up to 350 kilograms (750 pounds)! The Amazon manatee can also be distinguished from the other species by its smoother rubbery skin and lack of "finger nails" on its flippers.

How did I feel when I saw it?:

When I see the manatees each week, I cannot help but smile. They are usually playing with each other or swimming around their habitats. I feel so happy knowing CREA is helping them return to their homes in the Amazon.

Where does it live?:

The Amazonian manatee is the only species of manatee to live in freshwater habitats.