POMPANO BEACH (CBSMiami) – A group of four manatees in a mating herd put on quite a show on Pompano Beach Monday afternoon.
Jorge Pino, with the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission said Spring and Summer are prime time for manatee mating. The males coerced the female into shallow water where they attempted to mate with her. Beachgoers lined the shoreline to get a better view. Manatees do not form permanent pair bonds like some animal species.
During breeding, a single female will be followed by a group of a dozen or more males or bulls, forming a mating herd, according to Save The Manatee Club.
While they appear to breed indiscriminately, experience of some males in the herd probably plays a role in breeding success. When a female manatee goes into estrus, she is soon detected and pursued by numerous male manatees throughout the cycle, according to the group.
During a period which can last up to three weeks, the female can mate with one or more males in the mating herd.
A mating herd is sort of a free-for-all, according to the group, in shallower waters the effect can be quite dramatic with churning waters and flailing flukes and flippers.