Just as important is warm water habitat. The following summer he had traveled all the way from Florida to Rhode Island! As of February 2016, 6,250 manatees were reported swimming in Florida's springs. CMA Research Institute scientists are satellite tagging and tracking manatees in the USA to deepen our understanding of manatee movements, behavior, and habitat. TECO Manatee Viewing Center, Apollo Beach Tampa Electric's Manatee Viewing Center is a designated manatee sanctuary to which large numbers of manatees in Florida return annually to the warm discharge waters of the Big Bend Power Station. The Florida manatee, Florida’s state marine mammal, is a large aquatic relative of the elephant. Florida estuaries and freshwater lakes, springs and rivers provide extensive beds of seagrass and abundant freshwater aquatic vegetation that provide the manatee’s primary food sources. It is illegal under federal and Florida law to injure or harm a manatee.

One manatee called Chessie by the rescuers in Chesapeake Bay moved it from the cold waters there to Florida. Any habitat where the manatee lives has to provide it with some basics. The FWC uses GIS applications and data as viable tools to carry out necessary activities of rulemaking, protection planning, permit review, and public information response related to endangered and threatened species. Their front flippers help them steer, or sometimes crawl, through shallow water. Along with a documented increase in the Crystal River subpopulation, winter use at alternate natural springs in northwestern Florida is increasing. Viewing platforms, tidal walkways, and an environmental education center are located at this 50-acre facility. Tracking Manatees in Florida.
Manatees are grayish brown in color and have thick, wrinkled skin on which there is often a growth of algae. The Science Issue and Relevance: Florida manatees range along the Gulf of Mexico coast from Florida to Texas, although little is known about manatee use areas and habits west of the Suwannee River. Primary threats to the West Indian manatee include habitat loss and fragmentation, entanglements in fishing gear, collisions with boats, and others. Manatee population in the United States reached a low in the 1970's, during which only a few hundred individuals lived in the nation.

They also have powerful, flat tails that help propel them through the water. The most significant problems presently faced by Florida manatees is the loss of warm water habitat, and death and injury from boat strikes. CMA Research Institute staff have extensive experience tagging and tracking manatees in Florida and around the world. They also placed a tracking device on Chessie before he was released.

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