For decades, Save the Manatee Club, a non-profit organization operating out of Maitland, Florida, has safeguarded, observed, and shared the lives of manatees: gentle seafaring giants iconic to the southeastern United States. Showcasing the Sirenia is the club’s annual calendar: a 13-page spread of serene sea cows in their natural, delicate environment.
Review by John Tapley; sample imagery courtesy Save the Manatee Club
The Save the Manatee Club 2020 calendar features captivating, inspiring, and amusing tableaus of manatees meandering through their aquatic world. Manatees are far from camera shy, and across these pages, purchasers can enjoy the mighty marine mammals in a multitude of scenarios and expressions: highlighting their uniqueness and curiosity while signifying their importance and vulnerability. Some pages throughout the calendar carry themes contingent on the month: for example, February highlights two manatees nuzzling each other; March, Seagrass Awareness Month, features a sea cow snacking on a bed of green sea grass; May displays a lifting scene between a manatee mother and calf. Regular photographers and contributors to Save the Manatee Club, including members and volunteers, have shared some of their best work for this year’s calendar, and include Gregory Sweeney, David Schrichte, Joe Cruz, Cora Berchem, Wayne Hartley, Tracy Colson, and club executive director Patrick M. Rose.
One of Save the Manatee Club’s key pillars is in education, and 2020’s calendar continues to share useful information and facts every month. The calendar opens with a message from Patrick M. Rose, detailing the current difficulties facing manatees and the importance of human consideration and intervention on the creatures and their environments. Last year marked an increase in manatee deaths, signaling a greater emphasis on the club and its prevailing mission. On each page, readers can discover the ins and outs of manatees and conservation: June explores the scientific order Sirenia; September focuses on dangers manatees regularly face; December emphasizes the importance of public support and changing laws to help the delicate marine species. Each month also highlights one of the club’s manatee adoptees, a core element of the organization, in a thumbnail image.
The 2020 Save the Manatee Club calendar measures 12’’ by 24’’ when open and sells for $14.95 on shopsavethemanatee.org. Persons who adopt a manatee through savethemanatee.org/adopt can receive the calendar free of charge.
For more details on Save the Manatee Club and its ongoing mission to safeguard and conserve manatees and their environments, visit savethemanatee.org.