Latest Manatee update

Old 01-21-2010, 04:23 PM
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Default Latest Manatee update

There are more manatees than ever!

Sea-cow census reveals more manatees
BY JIM WAYMER • FLORIDA TODAY • January 21, 2010

Florida wildlife officials counted 5,067 manatees statewide during aerial surveys last week, a third more sea cows than last year’s count.

That crushed the previous record of 3,802 set last year, by more than 1,265 sea cows.

Spotters saw 2,779 manatees on Florida’s east coast and 2,288 on the west coast last week. They found 1,091 in Brevard, most at the two power plants off U.S. 1 in Port St. John.

FWC staff is reviewing and recounting the data before releasing final figures.

The statewide survey is a minimum count or snapshot of what counters could see at one given time.

“This year’s high count reflects the influence that weather has on aerial survey results,” Holly Edwards, a biologist with Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission said in a release.

Record-breaking cold last week helped to bring many more manatees to the warm-water sites such as power plants than in previous years, making them easier to count, she said.

“In addition, the calm, clear weather conditions on the days of the survey helped us to see and count record numbers,” Edwards said.

But boaters against stricter slow-speed manatee zones have held for years that larger counts and increased sea cow deaths are the result of a growing population.
Florida broke its record for manatee deaths in 2009, with 429 manatees dying statewide. The previous record was 417 in 2006.
Federal and state governments list the species as endangered.

Not including staff time, the sea cow census typically costs FWC from $5,000 to $10,000 per year, said Carli Segelson, spokeswoman with the Fish and Wildlife Research Institute in St. Petersburg.

Last year’s survey cost about $8,800, she said.

The surveys are paid for from the state’s Save the Manatee Trust Fund, which gets money from the manatee license plate.

Contact Waymer at 242-3663 or [email protected].
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Old 01-21-2010, 05:15 PM
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Good to see there are coming back a little....I see them a lot up in Crystal River, Florida. Awesome experience to swim with them, they are unbelievably large
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Old 01-22-2010, 12:51 AM
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Dateline Fon Du Loc Wisconsin 21 January 2010 Mercury Marine today announced the completion of design and development of their new state of the art CNC'd propellor system. This new 5 blade propellor is constructed from a single block of proprietary alloy which is completely corrosion resistant, impervious to staining /discoloration and is up to 135% stronger than comparable stainless props. Mercury rep Bob. Eque reports that the name for this revolutionary product line will be the "GINSU CLEAVER and that the prop is warrented to resist blade defelection or damage while filleting manatees at up to 7000 rpm. The GINSU CLEAVER line of props will start at $1200 and mercury pledges to donate 0.00% of sales to the Sierra club.

Ralph Cramden
Powerboat Perversion Magazine.
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