Subject: Re: manatees

Nancy Sadusky (
Mon, 5 Oct 1998 00:08:39 +0000

Dear John,

Thanks so much for your question:
Do manatees eat as much as whales?

Manatees are herbivores (plant-eaters), feeding on a large variety of
submerged, emergent, and floating plants. Seagrass beds are important
feeding sites for manatees. Some favorite foods of manatees include:
Marine vegetation: Manatee grass, turtle grass, shoal grass, widgeon
grass. Freshwater vegetation: Hydrilla, eelgrass, water hyacinth, and
water lettuce.   I'm not sure how much whales eat, but it is 
estimated that manatees can eat about 10-15% of their body weight in 
vegetation daily. So a 1,000 pound manatee would eat between 100-150 
pounds of food a day! 

     Communications Director
      Save the Manatee Club
       500 N. Maitland Ave.
       Maitland, FL  32751
         (407) 539-0990