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One Planet: Conservation groups sue federal government to protect Florida manatees

A Florida manatee cow and calf.
Keith Ramos/U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
A Florida manatee cow and calf.

On this edition of Your Call’s One Planet series, we discuss the future of Florida manatees. According to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, more than 1,100 manatees died in Florida last year— nearly double the five-year average — with most dying of starvation.

Several environmental organizations have sued the commission for failing to revise outdated critical habitat for Florida manatees over the manatee deaths. What needs to change and what will it take to save the manatees?


Jaclyn Lopez, Florida director and staff attorney for the Center for Biological Diversity

Patrick Rose, executive director of Save the Manatee Club

Web Resources:

Save the Manatee Club

The Center for Biological Diversity: As Deaths Soar, Lawsuit Seeks to Protect Critical Habitat for Florida Manatees

Inside Climate News: Florida’s Red Tides Are Getting Worse and May Be Hard to Control Because of Climate Change

University of Miami: No longer endangered, manatees now face another crisis

USA Today: Study: More than half of Florida's manatees have the herbicide glyphosate in their bodies

Malihe Razazan is the senior producer of KALW's daily call-in program, Your Call.