Aquatia Exhibit

Manatee

My animal is the manatee. Did you know that a manatee's meat can feed a whole village for several days. Manatees can weigh up to 2000 pounds. They eat plants, but also small crab snails and other small creatures. They can live 60 years. Man is the manatee's only enemy. The manatee is killed for its meat and skin. Its skin is used to make leather, war shields, shoes, and canoes. There are five different types of manatees: the Amazonian, Antillean, Florida, West African, and West Indian. I enjoyed giving this report.

Eagle

My animal is a eagle. Its wings get to reach six feet long from tip to tip. It is called the bald eagle because it has feathers on it head and looks like it is bald from a long way off. It has a big nest. The biggest nest ever found was nine feet wide and 12 feet deep.

Florida Panther

The Florida panther lives in the Everglades of Florida and makes an effort to stay away form humans and their guns. The Florida panther rarely attacks people, unless food is scarce. The best thing to do if you are ever attacked by a panther is to stand up straight and look around for the biggest stick you can find. Never run or the animal will chase you. The panther's main food source is small rodents and deer. Like the wolf, it attacks the old and sick of the deer herd. Some other names for the cougar are the cougar, puma, or mountain lion. The cougar is about five feet from its nose to its tail.

Alligator

Did you know that you could roll an alligator or any species in its family) on its back and rub its stomach, it will fall asleep? The average female's length is eight to nine feet long, and the average male's length is about 11-12 feet. The longest recorded length of an alligator is 19 feet long. In the wild, an alligator lives between 30 and 35 years. However, in captivity, many live up to 80 years. Most alligators weigh between 400 and 500 pounds. Approximately, 80 teeth are in the alligator's jaw at one time. In the gums, more teeth are waiting in case a tooth falls out or is injured. As many as 2,000 to 3,000 teeth are used in its lifetime.

 With both male and female, they are ready to mate they are about six feet lang. After spending several weeks together in courtship, the two immediately return to their own territory. (They are very territorial) two months after mating, the female makes a nest of sticks, leaves and mud. In ti she lays 30 to 50 eggs. When the alligators hatch they are black and yellow splotched and only eight or nine inches long. They instinctively head for the water and soon leave the area. There is no loyalty in their blood. If an adult alligator hears a baby cry in distress it will rescue the baby hoping that what ever is distressing the younger one will be suitable for them to eat.

 American Alligators live in Florida, Georgia, and Louisiana. They live in salt free and pollution free water. If there is a trace of either in the water the Alligator will try and find another home. They can live in lakes, ponds ,rivers, canals, swamps, etc. . . In times of drought the American Alligator can create its own pond by choosing a swampy area and swishing its tail and biting the mud and plants. As time goes on the alligator will make improvements.

 People were the alligators only predator. Now the American alligator is protected. American Alligators are one of few species to move from the endangered list down to the threatened. They could be off the list completely but because of the similarity in appearance with the American Crocodile, which is at great risk, the American Alligator is still protected.

 The American Alligator will eat any thing small it can catch such as frogs, mink, fish, birds, muskrat, dogs, rabbits, snakes, and turtles.

 American alligators are scaly reptiles with impenetrable hide on their back in contrast with their soft white bellies. American Alligators range in uniform color from green to blue-gray to black. The American alligator's eyes and nostrils are raised above the rest of their body so that they can swim under water with their main senses exposed for easier hunting. They have a third clear eyelid which they close under water for better eyesight.

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Date Updated: January 18, 2001