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Manatee Update

Bear Warriors, a non-profit dedicated to the peaceful coexistence with Florida’s wildlife, has notified the Florida Department of Environmental Protection of their “Intent to Sue” on behalf of starving manatees.

The Center for Biological Diversity, Save the Manatee Club, and Defenders of Wildlife issued a 60-day notice to sue the United States Environmental Protection Agency for violations of the Endangered Species Act and the Clean Water Act on behalf of the manatee.

In 2021, over 1,000 manatees have died, 12% of all Florida manatees. Malnutrition was responsible for a large number of the deaths. Failing water quality has resulted in algal blooms and a 95% seagrass loss - the primary food source for the manatee.

The environmental attorneys for the lawsuits place the blame for the estuary’s demise on high levels of nutrient pollution caused by inadequate sewage facilities, the continued permitting and use of septic tanks and the excessive amounts of fertilizer and other contaminates entering the Lagoon.

The Clean Water Coalition of Indian River County supports these efforts to force both the State and the Federal governments to pay attention to this crisis and enact the necessary funding and regulations to save – not only the manatees – but our health, economy and quality of life.


Advocacy Corner

Help to save the Oculina Coral Reef! This unique deep-water coral ecosystem is found nowhere else on earth. The Oculina ecosystem is an important habitat for a variety of fish species (70 species) including scamp grouper, gag grouper, snowy grouper, speckled hind, and red snapper. This habitat provides spawning and nursery services for young fish, including commercially important grouper and snapper. The South Atlantic Fishery Management Council (SAFMC) recently voted to open a portion of marine protected areas to commercial rock shrimp fishing. Sign this petition to help keep the protected area intact!

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