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Manatee JunctionTM

Sirenia Vitals & Statistics

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Anatomy continued

Senses: The manatee have very tiny, hard to find, ear openings yet have very large internal ear bones which help provide them a good sense of hearing. They communicate by making chirping, squeaking, and whistling noises using their larynx, the same "voice box" as most mammals. Manatees can see colors and appear to have no trouble detecting objects at distances over thirty feet. Manatee biologists, believe that manatees can both taste and smell. Touch seems to be important to manatees as they appear to engage in a lot of body contact while socializing with their herd. The small hairs which sparsely cover the skin may be used by the manatee to detect contact.

Swimming Speed

Cruising: 2 mph Flight: 15 mph.

Land Dwelling Relatives

The elephant (Proboscidea), hyrax (Hyracoidea), aardvark (Tubulidentata) and manatee are descendants from a common ancestor and are considered "subungulates". Only the aardvark is not herbivorous, all the others primarily eat vegetation.

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