| Latin Name
| Conservation Status
||3 - 4 m (10 - 13 ft)
||Up to 500 Kgs (1,100 lbs)
| Life Expectancy
Up to 60 Yrs
West African Manatees reach lengths between 3 and 4 m (10 - 13 ft) and they weigh up to 500 kgs (1,100 lbs). They are grey/brown in colour and they have a sparse scattering of short hair on their body. Their skin is thick and beneath it they have a layer of fat.
Their body is large and rounded, and they have a paddle like tail fluke. Their front limbs act as flippers and they are agile in water.
They have a small head with a broad muzzle that is adapted for feeding on aquatic plants. Their eyes are small and they rely on their senses of hearing and touch.
West African Manatees feed on abrasive plants and because of this their teeth are constantly being worn down. To counteract this their teeth are continually being replaced throughout their life.
West African Manatees are found in the coastal areas, estuarine lagoons, large rivers and freshwater lakes of west Africa. They are mainly solitary but sometimes they will gather in small groups.
West African Manatees feed upon aquatic plants. They are dependent on overhanging or emergent vegetation and they mainly feed at night.
West African Manatees give birth to one calf in a shallow lagoon. Little else is known about reproduction in West African Manatees but it is assumed to be similar to that of the West Indian Manatee.
Humans and crocodiles are predators of West African Manatees.
There are no subspecies of the West African Manatee.
West African Manatees are also known as:
West Indian Manatee