| Material Information
||Sirenews newsletter of the IUCNSSC Sirenia Specialist Group
||v. : ; 29 cm.
||International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources -- Sirenia Specialist Group
International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources -- Sirenia Specialist Group
||IUCN/SSC Sirenia Specialist Group
||Place of Publication:
||two no. a year[apr. 1984-]
||Sirenia -- Periodicals ( lcsh )
Marine mammals -- Periodicals ( lcsh )
||periodical ( marcgt )
||Includes bibliographical references.
||Additional Physical Form:
||Also issued via the World Wide Web.
||Dates or Sequential Designation:
||No. 1 (Apr. 1984)-
||Supported 1984-Apr. 1992 by the Species Survival Commission of IUCN, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, and the U.S. Marine Mammal Commission; Oct. 1992 by the U.S. Marine Mammal Commission & U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service; Apr. 1993-Oct. 1994 by the U.S. Marine Mammal Commission; <Oct. 1995>- by the U.S. Marine Mammal Commission and Sea World, Inc.
||Title from caption.
||Latest issue consulted: No. 48 (Oct. 2007).
| Record Information
||University of Florida
||University of Florida
||All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
||oclc - 35841617
lccn - 2009208704
issn - 1017-3439
Sirenews (ISSN 1017-3439) appears twice a year
in April and October and is edited by Daryl P. Domning,
Department of Anatomy, Howard University, Washington, D.C. 20059 USA
(fax: 1-202-265-7055). It is supported by the U.S. Marine Mammal Commission
and Sea World, Inc.
NUMBER 29 APRIL 1998
IN THIS ISSUE: DUGONGS DISAPPEARING FROM EAST AFRICA (p. _)
In Sirenews No. 28 (Oct. 1997) it was stated by Newton Banks that the first case of
[manatee] twins [conceived] in captivity occurred in Brazil on 10 April 1997. This is not correct!
Since 1981 we have had 15 births of manatees at [our] zoo, and on 24 April 1986 we had the first
case of twins (male and female), which live now at Singapore and Berlin. The second case of
twins we had on 8 August 1992 (male and female). The male we had to euthanize on 14 August
1992 because of hydrocephalus and myopathia. The female lives now at Yashima Sea Palace in
At the moment we are collecting data for an international studbook on manatees. If
anyone has a survey of [captive] manatees in the United States, I would greatly appreciate getting
a copy. We are especially interested in getting information on zoos breeding manatees. Historical
data are welcome too. Dr. Peter M*hling (Director, Tiergarten N*rnberg, Am Tiergarten 30,
90480 N-mberg, Germany; fax: (0911) 54 54 802; e-mail: )
DESPERATELY SEEKING SIRENIA
I am producing a comprehensive and practical field guide to marine mammals of the
world, supported with illustrations and photographs. My major areas of weakness are Sirenia and
the marine otter. I am seeking assistance from Sirenews readers in finding suitable photos. Ideal
images will show typical surface postures of the various species, underwater full-body and detail
shots, behaviors, and anything else that would be helpful in identifying the species. A use fee will
be paid. Photographers will retain all rights. If you can help please contact: Pieter Folkens, 940
Adams St., Suite F, Benicia, California 94510-2950 USA, tel.: 1-707-746-1049; fax: 1-707-746-
5599; e-mail: .
FLORIDIANS FOR A SUSTAINABLE POPULATION
Residents of Florida (or elsewhere) who are as concerned as they should be about the
explosive growth of that state's human population now have their very own advocacy group.
Floridians for a Sustainable Population, headquartered in Winter Park, publishes an informative
quarterly newsletter (the Florida Population Forum) and periodically holds meetings and
conferences at various locations around the state. Individual dues are US$25 per year, tax-
deductible (see advertisement in this issue). Remember, human population growth is the principal
and underlying threat to the survival of the Florida manatee (and many other species)!
East African Dugongs Disappear-ing. I am sad to report that we are rapidly losing the
battle to protect the last of the dugongs on the east African coast. Kenya and Tanzania have all
but lost their populations, and the last viable population in the Bazaruto Archipelago in
Mozambique is down from 110 in 1993 to about 21 in September 1997, according to my last air
survey. Gillnets set in seagrass habitats for shark harvesting still continue to plunder the
populations in spite of repeated attempts to have the gillnets banned.
Current legislation in Mozambique sets a fine of 7.5 million meticais (about R3000 in
South African currency [or about US$600 Ed.]) and 3 months in prison for killing a dugong,
even if it is an accidental gillnet fatality. An inevitable aftermath of 16 years of war is the
breakdown of law en-forcement. The dugong's flesh is favored by local fishermen, while some
officials are reluctant to implement the law. It is now a frequent sight for tourists to watch
dugongs being butchered within view of Inhassoro village.
Just recently I discovered a pregnant female dugong tethered to a jetty at Vilankulo (a
coastal town opposite the Bazaruto Archi-pelago about 800 km north of Mozambique's capital
city of Maputo), and on inquiry found out that the local Port Captain had confiscat-ed the dead
animal from the gill netters and was planning to serve the meat as a special treat to President
Chissano during his tour of the district. I managed to have the President informed of the dire
straits of the dugong and advised him not to take part in the meal.
The next time I communicate with you will be to pronounce that the dugong, like the
dodo, no longer survives in the southern Indian Ocean region. Paul Dutton (Dutton
Environmental Consultants, 118 Mansfield Road, Durban 4001, South Africa; tel./fax: (031)215
788; e-mail: )
Manatee Recovery Committee Established. A meeting of manatee special-ists,
representatives of the Instituto Nacional de Ecologia, and Mexican governmental authorities on
27-29 November 1997 estab-lished a new Consultative Committee for the Protection and
Recovery of the Antillean Manatee in Mexico (Comite Consultivo para la Proteccion y
Recuperacion del Manati del Caribe en M,xico). Beginning in March 1998, this committee will
define policies and strategies for manatee conservation in Mexi-co, and select priorities for
research and other activities. The committee is chaired by Luz del Carmen Colmenero Rolon,
who can be contacted at: shaman@cancun. rce.com.mx.
Logging Threatens Coastal Envi-ronment. The Rainforest Action Network reports (in
its Action Alert 134, January 1998) that rainforests on the east coast of Nicaragua are imperiled
by continuing opera-tions of a logging company that have already been ruled illegal.
The affected area (known as the North Atlantic Autonomous Region), which features the
largest intact tropical rainforest in the Western Hemisphere outside of the Amazon, includes the
homelands of the Miskito and Rama Indians, who traditionally are manatee hunters. Toxic
chemicals from the company's wood treatment plants run directly into the rivers and streams, and
therefore could affect manatee habitat downstream in addition to polluting the Indians' drinking
The Nicaraguan government granted logging concessions in the area to Solcarsa, a
subsidiary of the Korean-based transnational company Kumkyng; but last February, Nicaragua's
Supreme Court ruled the conces-sion unconstitutional because the company had failed to consult
regional advisory coun-cils about the project's environmental impact. Nonetheless, the
government has made no effort to enforce the Supreme Court's ruling,
and Solcarsa is still building roads and cut-ting down old-growth rainforest trees. Solcarsa
has demonstrated no respect for community interests or needs, has built logging facilities without
approval, and has relocated entire indigenous settlements that were in the path of logging.
In early October, the Human Rights Commission of the Organization of American States
ruled that the Nicaraguan government violated international law by ignoring its own Supreme
Court ruling. The Rainforest Action Network and other activists have requested that letters
supporting preservation of the rainforest and respect for indigenous rights be sent to: President
Arnoldo Aleman, Casa de Presidente, Managua, Nicaragua.
Senegal Manatees Close To Extinc-tion. During August and October 1997, researchers
Rosario Navaza and Owen Burnham made a detailed survey of the wil-dlife of Senegal, paying
special attention to the West African manatee which used to be common in the Casamance,
Gambia, and Senegal rivers in the 1970s. Burnham was born and raised in Senegal and hence is
very familiar with the habits and habitat of the species.
The survey consisted of a combination of search and enquiry among fishermen in areas
where the manatee used to occur. In almost all areas, fishermen reported not having seen any
manatees for many years. This was the case in most parts of the Casamance River from the
murky river estu-ary at Elenkine and Carabane to Kolda, at which point the river is very narrow
and fast-flowing in the rainy season.
In only two areas did local people report the continued presence of the species. A pair
were captured below the Kolda bridge, where the river is only 30 m wide, in 1990. Two manatees
had been observed for several days, swimming calmly below the bridge and feeding on the
abundant "water lettuce" that grows there. Finally it was decided that these two would be
captured and eaten, and nets were brought in from Gudomp town, about 80 km away. The first
net was broken in the struggle, but another, stronger net did succeed in capturing them. The drama
did not end here, as a van brought to carry the manatees lacked the power to pull them clear of
the river edge. After re-peated efforts, an intervention by the local spiritual leader led to an
extraordinary happening. The holy man decreed then and there that the two manatees should be
imme-diately released, as they were the spirit incar-nate of the local river and killing them would
bring dire consequences on the town. In accordance with the decree, the two manatees were
released, apparently unharmed, and swam away, never to be seen again. There is plenty of water
vegetation along this stretch of river and it is likely that the manatees have simply moved to
another part of the river and become more surreptitious, as is the way of their species.
It is interesting to note that since that time there have been reports of at least one manatee
in a calm stretch of the same river about 15 km away. Both sites were visited by day and night,
and though no manatees were observed, their presence was confirmed by several independent
fishermen. They are regarded as semi-sacred here and have not been molested. The river is
about 40 m wide at this point, near the town of Bantan-kountou, with dense overhanging
vegetation and stands of water grasses in the shallower areas. If one wades in the water, "manatee
holes", dug out by their flippers, are quite obvious. They appear to tolerate water at depths of a
little over a meter to feed on the grasses. It was impossible to ascertain how deep the river is at its
deepest point, but it is probably not more than 4 m deep except where manatees have been
In all other areas surveyed, there were no recent reports of sirenians. One was washed up
on the beach at Kap Skirring near the border with Guinea Bissau in 1991 (Malang Mane, pers.
comm.). Another was caught by Lebou fishermen at Grand Yoff, Dakar in 1993. Manatees are
still reported to occur in the delta of the Sine Saloum near Kaolack in northern Senegal, but
firsthand accounts of sightings are not available as fishermen seem very unfamiliar with them
With regard to the digging habits of the manatees, we can only assume that they dig in
order to find roots or tubers. The large quantities of silt they churn up while digging were a
giveaway of their presence to hunters, who used to harpoon them with a spear at-
tached to a float. The wounded manatee would then be followed by canoe until ex-hausted. The
manatees used to leave the main river in the rainy season and enter the adja-cent freshwater
swamps, where they would feed on water lily tubers and on rice where this was planted. They
were easily caught if found in these swamps. When digging in the slow-moving river they were
probably feed-ing on the roots of grasses that grow in the water. It is a sad fact that the great
holes they used to dig are often the only reminders of their presence long after the manatees are
In conclusion, we believe the Sene-galese population of Trichechus senegalensis to be
gravely threatened. Populations in most of the Casamance have been lost due to overfishing and
the terrible salinization that has affected the region. In many areas there are not even any
mangroves left, and some studies have reported the river to be three times more salty than the sea
in places. The water is still fresh at Kolda and Bantankoun-tou, but whether manatee populations
there are viable is another issue. Surveys urgently need to be carried out to determine the
population of manatees remaining in these two areas. Survey work in these areas may become
more difficult if the current war spreads as it seems likely to do. Rosario Navaza and Owen
Burnham (3 Dawn Close, Hounslow, England TW4 7EN; tel./fax: +44 181 577 2006)
The seasonal occurrence and ecology of Florida manatees (Trichechus uniatiis latiros-
tris) in coastal waters near Sarasota, Florida (Jessica K. Koelsch). -
Although well studied at winter aggregation sites, Florida manatee (Trichechus nianatius
latirostris) ecology is less known at summer sites. In one of the first intensive non-winter
(March-November) studies of manatees on Florida's west coast, I monitored animals in Saraso-ta
Bay from 1993-1996. I used resightings of recognizable individuals to document life history
traits, site fidelity and seasonal residency, movements, social behaviors, habitat use and selec-
tion, and food selection.
Numerous identifiable manatees used the Sarasota Bay area and provided the basis for
extensive studies. The scar catalog contained 128 individuals from 1993 to 1996; 88% were
resighted in Sarasota Bay and 95% were sighted more than once including at winter locations in
Tampa Bay, Myakka River, Ft. Myers, the Everglades, and Crystal River. Many manatees
(60.2%) returned to the Sarasota area multiple years, similar to some winter site return rates. I
developed an average monthly residence index (AMRI) and documented both seasonal resi-dents
and transients. Manatees displayed differential fidelity to specific sites and traveled between sites
via distinct travel corridors. Residency and site fidelity of independent calves resembled that of
their mothers, possibly indicating tradition. Life history parameters were similar to those
documented by other studies.
The manatee social structure appeared non-random and fluid. Manatees associated
weakly gender groups with strongest associations between individuals of same gender. Males
appeared more social than females.
Manatees exhibited distinct patterns of resource use and selection. Individuals used
certain habitats for specific behaviors; shoal/sand bars, grassbeds, dredged basins, and dredged
channels were used most universally. Compared to resource availability, manatees preferen-tially
selected habitats (dredged basins and channels) and food (Thalassia testudinum).
These findings may have numerous management implications: life history data can
provide the basis for estimates of survival rates; individualistic site fidelity, residency, and
movement patterns reinforce that manatee protection may require complicated strategies; long-
distance migrations helped delineate subpopulations; travel corridors, habitat use and selection,
and food selection data indicated key local resources for protection. In addition, manatee
association patterns helped to define the extent to which manatees may be social. The tech-
niques used in this study may be transferable to studies of manatees at other non-winter sites.
Adrenal gland circulatory anatomy in the Florida manatee, Trichechus nianaitus latirostris
(M rio Jorge Mota). Adrenal glands subserve a vital role in maintaining proper physiological
levels of mineralcorticoids, glucocorti-coids, and catecholamines. Mineralcorticoids control
blood pressure and elec-trolytes; glucocorticoids have an anti-inflammatory potency and regulate
carbohydrate, protein and lipid metabolism; and catecholamines are involved in an organism's
response to emergency situations. Adrenals were collected from seven fresh manatee carcasses,
of both sexes, by the Florida Department of Environmental Protection Marine Mammal
Pathobiology Laboratory. Glands were injected with a mixture of gelatin and India ink either
retrogradely via the adrenal vein, or antegradely via adrenal arteries. This permitted separate
visualization of the cortical and medullary circulation. Glands were fixed, dehydrated, cleared,
embedded in paraffin, sectioned at 6-7 aem, and stained with hematoxylin and eosin or with
Gomori's trichrome stain. Using light microscopy, serial sections were examined to follow the
origin, course and distribution of specific vessels to develop the description of the adrenal
circulatory and nervous systems. Histological sections were also scanned with a NIH Image 1.52
program that measured the area occupied by connective tissue, cortex and adrenal medulla.
Results show that the Florida manatee adrenal glands consist of approximately 53.34 ft
4.51% connective tissue, 39.86 ft 3.21% cortex, and 6.81 ft 3.32% medulla. They are rela-tively
small organs measuring 0.019 cm/cm body length and weighing 0.02 g/kg body weight.
The manatee adrenal circulatory system displays the eutherian pattern. Blood enters the
adrenal capsule and forms a plexus that supplies the capsule before it drains into the cortex. Here,
it percolates through the sinuses of the three cortical zones, providing nutrients essential for
cellular maintenance. The cortico-medullary junction is surrounded by a relatively thick layer of
connective tissue through which a large spidery capillary network drains cortical blood directly
into the medulla. The medulla is relatively large and has a medullary-cortical ratio of 1:5.8, which
is similar to that of the dog. This hormone-rich cortical blood is collected into one main vessel
that exits the organ as the adrenal vein.
Using the values obtained from a correlation between the adrenal gland weight (g) and the
body weight (kg) of 46 species of eutherian mammals, the manatee adrenal glands' weight was
extrapolated to be approximately one-third smaller than its "optimal" size. This corre-sponds to
an adrenal gland/body weight ratio (AGBW) of 0.02 g/kg, which is one of the smallest among
mammals. Since this ratio is an indicator of metabolism, it suggests that the manatee's weight-
specific metabolic rate is similar to that found in the much bigger mysticetes, instead of an animal
of comparable size. [Abstract of a thesis for the degree of Master of Science in Biology,
submitted to the University of Central Florida, Orlando in 1997.]
Radiographic Analysis of the Osteological Development in the Manus
of the Florida Manatee (Trichechus nianatus latirostris) as an Age-Estimating
Technique (Danette M. S. Goodyear). Radiographs from a developmental
series of 179 flippers salvaged from 167 dead Florida manatees, Trichechus
nianatus latirostris (1.0-3.6 m total body length (TL)), were examined for the
first appearance and fusion of 34 carpal and epiphyseal ossification centers in
the manus. Chronological age has been estimated by counts of growth-layer-
groups in the petrous temporal bone and correlated with known-age manatees
(Marmontel, M., 1993. Age determination and population biology of the
Florida manatee, Trichechus nianatus latirostris. Ph.D. dissertation, Univ. of
Florida, Gainesville, 408 pp.). Radiographed flippers from 106 of these age-
estimated individuals were included in the current study. Objectives of this
study were to: identify the separate ossification centers in the manus; determine
when each ossification center first appeared as related to TL; determine when
each epiphyseal ossification center fused to its diaphysis as related to TL;
determine the sequence of development of ossification centers; correlate
ossification events with chronological age by comparing TL of radiographed
manatees with TL of aged manatees; and examine the unusual developmental
ossification patterns of the fifth digit.
Results from this cross-sectional study revealed that at birth, the
diaphyses of the radius, ulna, metacarpals I-V and phalanges (I-1, 11-3, III-3, IV-
3, V-1-3) were well ossified, and that after birth, 7 carpal bones and 27
epiphyseal ossification centers developed. Carpal bones and bony epiphyses
first appeared at 1.9 m TL. Other epiphyseal cen-ters, including the separate
proximal and distal epiphyses of the five metacarpals and the phalanges, first
ossified between 1.9 and 2.8 m TL (sexual maturity). These postnatal centers
first appeared in proximodis-tal and caudocranial sequences. First fusion, bony
bridges spanning the epiphyseal cartilage growth plate, was first seen in
metacarpal bones at 2.3 m TL and continued to appear throughout the manus
until 3.0 m TL. Full fusion of epiphyses to diaphyses continued through 3.6 m
TL. The number of diaphyseal and epiphyseal ossifications in the second and
third phalanges of the fifth digit varied from zero to four. Moreover, the data
suggest that these second and third phalanges coalesce into a single bone, the
composite terminal phalanx. Correlation of these radiographic data with
known-age specimens may be useful for the estimation of age of salvaged and
living Florida manatees. [Abstract of a thesis for the degree of Master of
Science in Anatomy, Pathology, and Pharmacology, submitted to the College
of Veterinary Medicine, Oklahoma State Uni-versity, Stillwater, in 1997 and
supervised by Alastair G. Watson.]
Baldwin, R., and V.G. Cockcroft. 1997. Are dugongs, Dugong dugon, in the Arabian Gulf
safe: Aquatic Mammals 23(2): 73-74.
Blaszkiewitz, B. 1995. Humboldt, Columbus, Therese von Bayern Seek-he im Tierpark
Berlin. Zoofreund 95: 16.
Brown, L.N. 1997. A guide to the mammals of the southeastern United States. Knoxville,
Univ. of Tennessee Press. [Manatee, 175-178.]
Carone, G. 1997. Metaxytherium medium (Desmarest) 1822 (Dugongidae, Sirenia,
Mammalia), delle arenarie tortoniane di Cessaniti (Calabria, Italia). Atti Soc. Ital. Sci. Nat.
Museo Civ. Stor. Nat. Milano 137(I-II): 91-100. [Engl. summ.]
Cockcroft, V.G., and J. Korrubel. 1997. Dire days for dugongs. Africa Environment &
Wildlife 5(1): 28-33.
De Iongh, H.H., B. Bierhuizen, and B. Van Orden. 1997. Observations on the behaviour of
the dugong (Dugong dugon M*ller, 1776) from waters of the Lease Islands, eastern
Indonesia. Contributions to Zoology (Amsterdam) 67(1): 71-77. [French summ.]
Domning, D.P. 1997. Marine mammals. In: F.F. Steininger, S. laccarino, & F. Cati (eds.),
In search of the Paleogene/Neogene boundary. Part 3: The global stratotype section and
point. The GSSP for the base of the Neogene (the Paleogene/Neogene boundary). Giornale
di Geologia (3)58(1/2): 177-180.
Gingerich, P.D., M. Arif, M.A. Bhatti, M. Anwar, and W.J. Sanders. 1997. Basilosaurns
drazindai and Basiloterus hussaini, new Archaeoceti (Mammalia, Cetacea) from the
Middle Eocene Drazinda Formation, with a revised interpretation of ages of whale-bearing
strata in the Kirthar Group of the Sulaiman Range, Punjab (Pakistan). Contr. Mus. Pal.
Univ. Michigan 30(2): 55-81. [Reports new material of Protosiren sattaensis.]
Gingerich, P.D., M. Arif, M.A. Bhatti, and W.C. Clyde. 1998. Middle Eocene stratigraphy
and marine mammals (Mammalia: Cetacea and Sirenia) of the Sulaiman Range, Pakistan.
In: K.C. Beard and M.R. Dawson (eds.), Dawn of the Age of Mammals in Asia. Bull.
Carnegie Mus. Nat. Hist. 34: 239-259.
Johannes, R.E., and W. MacFarlane. 1991. Traditional fishing in the Torres Strait Islands.
Hobart (Australia), CSIRO Division of Fisheries.
Kalk, M. 1995. Marine mammals: dugong; dolphins; whales. In: M. Kalk (ed.), A natural
history oflnhaca Island, Mozambique. Ed. 3. Johannesburg, Witwatersrand Univ. Press
(xxi + 395 pp.): 329-330.
Karre, B. 1995. A review of research on barramundi, reef fish, dugong, turtles and Spanish
mackerel and their fisheries in the Torres Strait adjacent to Papua New Guinea. Science in
New Guinea 21: 43-56.
Kataoka, T. 1997. [Dugong: invitation to sirenian biology.] Tokyo: 1-179. [In Japanese.]
Kirk, G. 1996. Fr*he Zeugnisse *ber Anstrengungen zum Naturschutz f*r Seek*he. Manati
(Nuremberg) 11(2): 8-9.
Lee, C. 1992. Totally trusting. Mahomet, Illinois, Mayhaven Publishing: x + 212.
[Adventure novel for young people, involving Florida manatees.]
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dugong fishery in Torres Strait, Australia/Papua New Guinea. Conserv. Biol. 11(6): 1375-
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(3): 427-430. [In Russian. English translation: Ganglion layer topography and retinal
resolution of the Caribbean manatee Trichechus manatuis latirostris. Doklady Biological
Sciences 355: 392-394, 1997.]
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First osteological collection of marine mammals for Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands.
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en la costa norte y centro-norte del Estado de Quintana Roo, M,xico. An. Inst. Biol. Univ.
Nac. Auton. M,xico, Ser. Zool. 68(1): 153-164. [Engl. summ.]
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Haltung und Zucht von Rundschwanz-Seek*hen (Trichechus manatus). Tiergarten Aktuell
(Nuremberg) 1(1): 8-16.
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Payne, J., and C.M. Francis. 1994. A field guide to the mammals of Borneo. Sabah
(Malaysia), The Sabah Society with WWF Malaysia: 1-332.
Pohle, C. 1995. Seek*he schwimmende Vegetarier. Takin 4(1): 15-17.
Reinhard, R. 1996. Kurze Seekuh-Notizen aus S*dostasien. Manati (Nuremberg) 11(2): 22-
Romeu, E. 1990. Manati, gigante de las aguas bajas. Somos Jovenes (Havana, Cuba), No.
Romeu, E. 1997. El gran manati antillano. Biodiversitas (Coyoac n, Mexico) 3(16): 2-6.
Silva, M., and J.A. Downing. 1995. CRC handbook of mammalian body masses. Boca
Raton, CRC Press: 1-359. [Sirenians, p. 281.]
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(Nuremberg) 10(1): 33-50.
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environment. E. Sussex, Pica Press; S. Africa, Russel Friedman; Netherlands & Belgium,
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SIRENIAN WEBSITE DIRECTORY
Caribbean Environment Programme, Regional Management Plan for the West Indian
Caribbean Stranding Network:
Florida Department of Environmental Protection, Bureau of Protected Species
Florida Department of Environmental Protection, Florida Marine Research Institute
(Florida manatee mortality data):
Save the Manatee Club:
Sea World of Florida:
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service:
CHANGES OF ADDRESS
Barbara Bernier Culhane, 7935 SW 201 Terrace, Miami, Florida 33189 USA
Paul Dutton, 118 Mansfield Road, Durban 4001, SOUTH AFRICA
Peter J. Fernandes, 3620A Choctaw St., Bryan, Texas 77802-2261 USA
Mario Antonio de Mello Dias, Prafa Marechal Deodoro No. 19 Centro, Penedo, CEP
57200-000, Alagoas, BRASIL
Monitor International, 154 Quiet Water Place, Annapolis, Maryland 21403 USA
Leslee Parr, Dept. of Biology, Southern Oregon University, 1250 Siskiyou Blvd., Ashland,
Oregon 97520 USA
D. R. Rioux, P. 0. Box 8032, Eureka, California 95502-8032 USA
Charles Tambiah, c/o 5012 Anthony St., Amelia Island, Florida 32034 USA
>>> COPY DEADLINE FOR NEXT ISSUE: OCTOBER 1, 1998 <<<
The Sirenews fax number is 1-202-265-7055 (USA).
Printed on recycled paper with soy ink
I am continuing to update my Bibliography and Index of the Sirenia and Desmostylia,
with a view to making the digital version available in some form. It is also necessary to
plan how best to maintain and adapt this database for use by the marine mammal research
and conservation community into the indefinite future. Now that the printed version has
been available for over a year, I would like to get feedback from those who have used it,
and I hereby solicit your comments on its format, ease of use, desirable enhancements, etc.
Your responses to the following questions would be much appreciated. If you know others
who have used the bibliography, please give copies of this questionnaire to them also.
Return completed questionnaires to me by mail or fax (1-202-265-7055). Feel free to make
further comments on additional sheets. Thank you! DPD
1. In what ways have you used the bibliography? (Check all that apply.)
___ Retrospective literature searches of particular topics (give examples of topics?)
___ Verification of references you were seeking in libraries or via interlibrary loan
___ Verification or completion of bibliographic citations to be used in your own
___ Casual browsing
___ Paperweight or doorstop
__ Verification of nomenclatural information (spelling of scientific names, citations of
author or date, references to original descriptions, synonymies, etc.)
___ Consultation of appendices other than the nomenclatural ones (which?)
___ Other (please specify):
2. Were you able to locate the information you wanted with little or no difficulty? If not,
what difficulties did you encounter? Did you eventually find the information using some
other (what?) means of information retrieval?
3. What features) of the work did you find most useful? (Check
all that apply.)
___ Bibliography (citations)
___ Bibliography (annotations)
__ Appendices (which?)
___ Index (headings and cross-references)
___ Index (citations)
___ Index (annotations)
___ Index (page references)
___ Other (please specify):
4. Are there any subject headings or cross-references that should
5. In what other ways could the work be improved or made easier
be added to the Index?
6. By far the most time-consuming task in maintaining this database is the indexing, i.e.,
the creation of the Index entries, annotations, and detailed page references (these are all
done individually by hand and not by computer sorting on keywords). In your opinion, are
the Index annotations and page references useful enough to justify someone's continuing to
create them for works added to the database in the future (or for the backlog of old works
not yet fully indexed)?
7. With some clever computer programming, it would probably be possible in principle to
retrospectively convert the existing indexing to a keyword-based system, including writing
lists of keywords to the main bibliographic entries as a supplement to the present main-
entry annotations. (From then on, future citations added to the Index would include only
year and authors) and would lack annotations and page references, like the incomplete
citations in the present Index, but would be generated automatically by computer rather
than by hand.) In your opinion, would this be an acceptable substitute for the present
system, or even an improvement?
8. If a digital version of the bibliography were available on the Internet, would you be able
to access it?
9. Given a choice between equally up-to-date printed and digital (on-computer) versions of
the bibliography, which would you prefer to use for most purposes? What use(s) would you
have for a digital version that could not be met, or met as well, by a printed version? What
use(s) would you have for a printed version that could not be met by a digital version?
10. If a copy of a digital version (e.g., high-capacity diskette or CD-ROM) were available
for purchase and use on your own computer instead of on-line, would you be interested in
purchasing one? Would you still want it if it were also available on-line?
Your Name (optional)
EDITORIAL: THE FLORIDA MANATEE DILEMMA
There is some good news regarding Florida manatees: (1) there is evidence that they
are increasing in numbers (at least in the best-protected areas such as around Crystal River
and Blue Spring); (2) they are certainly increasing their range somewhat (now living year-
round [?] in Wakulla County in the Florida Panhandle, for example); (3) the captive
population has so outgrown the capacity of captive facilities that males and females are
now separated to prevent breeding, and placement of unreleaseable animals in display
facilities outside Florida is being considered.
But they are not out of danger yet. Problems:
Increasing eutrophication of Florida's waters due to runoff from development may
reduce [?] manatee carrying capacity. [Effects on aq. weeds?]
Pending deregulation of the power industry will probably lead to increased competition
in the industry and closing of less efficient plants that have provided warm-water refugia
for manatees. [P. ROSE CONTRIB.?]
Rehabilitation of the Everglades by partly restoring its original hydrology will lead to
diminished water releases from Lake Okeechobee via the Chassahowitzka and St. Lucie
rivers. This will likely result in increased saltwater intrusion into the Chassahowitzka a
condition that in the past has contributed [?] to red tide outbreaks that were lethal to
It goes without saying (most of the time), but needs to be said anyway, that Florida's
growth in human population and development shows no signs of stopping.
... Analogous problems beset the endangered Key deer, which is endemic to the lower
Florida Keys. In late December 1996 the Associated Press reported that, although the wild
population of 250-300 is reproducing well and probably increasing, mortality also set a new
record of 100 in 1996. This was attributed in part to the large number of inexperienced
young animals roaming in search of new habitat and encountering heavy human traffic
(about two-thirds of the dead animals were killed by cars). The numbers of human tourists
and residents in the Keys, of course, are steadily increasing, along with development
pressures; so the Key deer's long-term future cannot be considered bright despite its high
reproductive rate at present....