Manatee deaths in Florida decline but starvation concerns remain high

BREVARD COUNTY, Fla. — Florida wildlife officials have released new details about the manatee population in Florida.


State wildlife leaders said they saw an uptick in calls for distressed or dead manatees around Christmas time.

Read: Manatee with watercraft wound rescued, transported to SeaWorld for care

The big cold snap we saw around that time is being blamed for the issues on the manatee population.

Officials said nearly 800 manatees died in Florida in 2022.

Watch: Manatee viewing at Blue Spring has visitors lined up for miles

Data shows a record 1,101 manatees died in 2021, mostly due to starvation.

Workers have ramped up efforts to help the animals through the rest of the winter, including a temporary field response station in Brevard County.

Read: Wildlife officials ramp up efforts to save manatees in Brevard County

Click here to download the free WFTV news and weather apps, click here to download the WFTV Now app for your smart TV and click here to stream Channel 9 Eyewitness News live.