Manatees Off The List?

Manatees could lose endangered status in Florida

Published online: May 01, 2006 News

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission plans to review proposed management plans for four animals on the state's imperiled species list, including manatees.

Scientists with the state group say manatees have recovered to the point where they are no longer in immediate danger of extinction, though they still require careful management.

Manatees could be reclassified from "endangered" to "threatened" if the commission approves the change at its June 7-8 meeting in
West Palm Beach in Florida.

Gopher tortoises and
Panama City crayfish have not fared as well. FWC commissioners will consider staff recommendations to create new management plans, and continue the process of reclassifying animals from "species of special concern" to "threatened."

The commission staff also is recommending removing bald eagles from the list of endangered species.