Manatees in Charleston!!

For the past few years there has been more and more Manatee (Trichechus manatus) sightings in the Charleston Harbor.

We have seen them 3 different times in the last few months around the Shem Creek area, as well as off James Island and in the Cooper River.

The endangered West Indian Manatee is a semi tropical water mammal and is the largest relative to the elephant. It can grow up to 15ft. long and weigh 3,300lbs. Eats 60-100 lbs. of vegetation a day. Average swim speed is 5-6mph and 15mph in short bursts.Time without surfacing is 4.5 minutes but can sleep 15-20 minutes on bottom when relaxing. They like to hang out around fresh water sources and can be found around industrial areas such as power plants that discharge warm water. They have been historically mistaken for mermaids by sailors.

Come join us for a chance to see this wonderful and elusive beast!