Manatee Takes Diver’s GoPro Camera and Films ‘Shaky and Unwatchable’ Footage

A diver who left their GoPro camera underwater had it stolen by a manatee who then attempted to take a selfie with it.

TikTok user and underwater explorer @skateybrown shared a video of the hilarious moment that an underwater camera was stolen by an unlikely thief while diving in Florida.

In a viral TikTok video, @Skateybrown explained that a fellow diver had set down their GoPro camera for a few moments to adjust their goggles.

However, at that moment, a manatee proceeded to grab hold of the GoPro camera’s selfie stick with its flippers.

@SkateyBrown filmed as the animal amusingly hoisted the selfie stick from the sea floor with its flippers and began shooting its own video.

In the clip, the manatee amusingly looks like it is attempting to lift the GoPro camera into a position so that it can take a selfie.

@victoriathexploradora Replying to @nonnernancy she was having her moment ✨ @Skatey 𖥧𓍊 #florida #floridamanatee #manatee #springs #floridawildlife ♬ original sound – 🎄Speed Audios🎄

Following multiple requests from viewers, the TikTok user uploaded the footage that the manatee recorded with the GoPro camera — with the animal hilariously failing to get a selfie.

Nonetheless, social media users were thrilled with the resulting footage that the manatee had filmed with the device.

“This has to be the first video ever recorded by a manatee,” a viewer writes.

While the manatee approached them as they were diving and took the GoPro camera, @SkateyBrown warned viewers that it is illegal to touch the creatures in Florida.

Manatees are protected by the Marine Mammal Protection Act of 1973 and the Florida Manatee Sanctuary Act of 1978. Touching a manatee is punishable under the Manatee Sanctuary Act, with a fine of up to $500 and/or a jail term of up to 60 days.

Manatees are extremely sensitive and interactions with humans can cause severe stress, especially in young ones. Manatees that get used to human interaction may lose their fear of humans or boats and increase the likelihood of getting injured or killed.

According to guidelines published by the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, if a manatee swims close or touches a person, they should not “pet” them or push them away. If an individual remains still and calm, the manatee will eventually swim away.

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