Manatee Dying in Pain During A Starvation Event- Our Email to F.W.C Feb. 2022

PLEASE, I am down on my knees begging all of you; to please, for the love of all that is sacred and holy on this Earth,  FEED THE DESOTO CANAL MANATEES IMMEDIATELY. Click this Photo Album to see the photos of a Starving Manatee in the DeSoto Canal this past month.

I have made the request several times and have offered the logistics of how to properly, effectively and responsibly prevent the starvation of the DeSoto Canal Manatee Herd.  

I have been told that my request is still ‘on the table’ but that it has not been approved nor moved forward by the participants of the Manatee Provisioning Expert Elicitation group.  (Full list of members below)

 How to prevent the starvation of DeSoto Canal Manatees:

1. Install a WATERGOAT at the south end of DeSoto Canal.  (the exact location of installation is indicated in red on the first picture attached to this email)

2. Place hundreds of pounds of hyacinths, hydrilla and/or eelgrass (manatees’ natural food sources) into the canal just a few feet north of the water goat (to keep the plants in place for easy consumption and to prevent the plants from floating away) 

3. Place the natural food source into the canal at night, near the south end of the canal (where they don’t aggregate and won’t be disturbed by plants dropping into water AND so the manatees do not associate humans with food)

4. Manatees will eat ALL of the food they find in the canal–because they are starving;  because there is no other food for them to eat; because they are already accustomed to eating hyacinths/hydrilla/eelgrass. 

5. By providing hyacinths/hydrilla/eelgrass instead of romaine or butter lettuce, the manatees will not have to learn a new behavior or be taught by rehab/release manatees to eat a new food,  like they had to do at the FPL Experimental feeding site. 

Important points:

Hyacinths are preferred over romaine lettuce by manatees

Hyacinths are much more nutritious for manatees than romaine lettuce

Hyacinths are manatees’ preferred and natural food source in hundreds of Florida waterbodies. 

Hyacinths can be manually harvested by teams of volunteers, providing a free and healthy source of food for the manatees

Hyacinths can be mechanically harvested by contracting Texas Aquatics, Sea & Shoreline (and other mechanical harvesting companies) and transported to starving manatee aggregation sites 

Hyacinths can be put into DeSoto Canal by the manatee volunteers from Brevard County Zoo

Hyacinths will not propagate in the IRL because the water goat will keep them contained until consumed by the manatees

Hyacinths will not propagate in the IRL because they are freshwater plants and the water in the IRL is brackish

Hyacinths will not propagate in the IRL because the lagoon is a severely polluted dead zone 

Hyacinths are water filtering, carbon sequestering, bass sheltering, essential components of Florida’s water ecosystems 

Hyacinths have been labeled as ‘invasive’ plants; annihilated with chemical herbicide poisons; and have created toxic muck at the bottom of Florida’s water bodies.

Hyacinths are thick, sturdy plants that stand up through harvesting and tranport 

Poisoning manatee food and habitat is a violation of Section 9 of the Endangered Species Act.

Not feeding starving manatees is a violation of Section 9 of the Endangered Species Act.DeSoto Canal: a warm water refuge for IRL manatees, located inside a small city park in Satellite Beach, Brevard County.

2: the number of emaciated manatees pulled from the DeSoto Canal in the last 3 weeks 

3: the number of emaciated manatees I witnessed and reported to the FWC on January 18th

1-25 : the number of manatees that aggregate in the DeSoto during non-detrimentally cold temps

150+ : the number of manatees that aggregate in DeSoto Canal during cold temps

Watergoat – a highly effective trash barrier perfect for streams, canals, ponds or lakes.  To learn more about this ingenious invention:

Concerning:  If the residents in the houses that back up to the DeSoto Canal are using fertilizers, pesticides, herbicides and/or RoundUp weedkiller in their back yards; their lawn runoff is going directly into the canal, poisoning the aggregating manatees that already have compromised immune systems due to their slow starvation, resulting from years of historical seagrass die off and IRL ecosystem collapse.  

Glyphosate: the deadly chemical in aquatic herbicides and weedkillers like RoundUp that are sprayed onto our lands and into our waters by State, Federal, City and County Governments , their contractors and private companies like Massey, TrueGreen, BioTech and Applied Aquatics.

Glyphosate:  the deadly chemical found in the blood of the majority of manatees tested

The recent starvation deaths of the DeSoto Herd could have been prevented had a starvation prevention program been approved and implemented in early 2021 when the unusual mortality event of mass starvations stared occurring. 

The pictures attached are of the starving manatee that was in the throes of death and writhing in pain in the DeSoto Canal this week.  He/she died shortly after being removed from the canal and transported to SeaWorld.  

May God bless his/her soul and may he/she Rest in Peace.

In Mourning and Sadness,

Katrina Shadix, Executive Director

Bear Warriors United

P. O. Box 622621

Oviedo, Fl 32762-2621


 Manatee Provisioning Expert Elicitation:

Margie Barlas, FWCGian Basili, USFWSTerri Calleson, USFWS
Susan Butler, USGSAlex Dew, FWCMark Cunningham, FWC
David Caldwell, USFWSJodie Eldridge, Next Era EnergyMartine de Wit, FWC
Scott Calleson, USFWSBrad Furman, FWCStacy DiRocco, SeaWorld
Chip Deutsch, FWCChuck Jacoby, SJRWMDDeb Fauquier, NOAA
Laura Engleby, NOAAPat McCord, FWCKat Frisch, FWC
Bill Greer, FWCMaria Merrill, FWCAndy Garrett, FWC
Buddy Powell, CMALori Morris, SJRWMD Jon Peterson, SeaWorld
Pat Rose, Save the Manatee ClubMatt Phillps, FWCJohn Schnettler, USFWS
Monica Ross, CMABrad O’Hanlon – Topic FacilitatorAmy Sloan, NOAA
Kent Smith, FWCRon Mezich – Topic HostAndy Stamper, Disney
Hannah Hart – Topic FacilitatorRachel Joffey – Topic NotetakerAshley Stilson, USFWS
Michelle Pasawicz – Topic Host  Kathleen Sullivan, Disney
Kristy Brightwell – Topic Notetaker Mike Walsh, UF
Sarah Barrett – Meeting Facilitator Graham Worthy, UCF
  Wes Seitz – Topic Facilitator
  Leslie Ward – Topic Host
  Courtney Feehrer – Topic and Meeting Notetaker

Katrina Also Posted on Her Social Media:

Here is a link to the post on February 11th 2022

Thank you for bearing witness to one of our lifetime’s most horrific & preventable ecocides.

💔It’s been an extremely rough week for manatees💔

And for those of us who care about them;

for those working round the clock to feed the FPL manatees;

for those retrieving the 4-14 starved-to- death manatees in the Northern Indian River Lagoon EVERY DAY;

for those having to transport their dead bodies to the Brevard County dump.

These starvation deaths were preventable.

The DeSoto Canal manatee pictured here is writhing in pain and in the throes of death-by- starvation.

It is an extremely painful and slow process for a manatee to die from starvation. Their insides basically melt.

This Manatee died just hours after these pictures were taken.

He/she was removed alive from the DeSoto Canal and taken to SeaWorld Wednesday.

Everyone tried valiantly, but he/she couldn’t be saved.

💔Rest in Peace Beatiful Gentle Soul💔

Pictured also below are the screenshots from my recent email to decision makers asking *once again* for the DeSoto Canal manatees to be fed, as I witnessed and reported 3 emaciated manatees in the DeSoto Canal on January 18th.

These pictures were taken by Steve Samoyedny.

He has given his permission to have them made into posters and I will be presenting them at every single damn public meeting I possibly can.





Goodnight cruel world….💔

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