Unfortunately, I just learned that one of my manatee pals died from a boat collision. She washed up in Ocean Reef Park on Riviera Beach earlier today. According to Amber Howell of the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission [FWC], the 10-year old, 1,100-pound manatee died instantly of “blunt force trauma” after she was hit by the boat. She also had broken ribs that punctured her lungs, Howell explained.
We Florida Manatees are a subspecies of the West Indian manatee. We are currently listed as “endangered” and are at risk from both natural and man-made causes of injury and death. Our exposure to red tide, cold stress and other diseases are the natural issues we face each day. The man-made challenges facing us are; boat strikes, flood gates (or locks) and also getting caught and tangled up in fishing gear.
If you see any sick or injured manatees, please call the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission at: 1-888-404-FWCC. They are the folks who are responsible for rescuing us in Florida.
Here is a cool link to the MRP …
~ Kobee Manatee