MANATEES ON THE MOVE
Seasonal Speed Zone Changes
As cooler weather arrives, manatees will begin migrating out of the rivers and coastal waters into warmer enclaves such as freshwater springs, power plant outflows and canals where they will spend winter. While some seasonal slow-speed zones expire in November, the timing of manatees traveling between their summer and winter habitats depends on when our coastal water temperatures approach 68 degrees.
In addition to obeying speed regulations, FWC reminds boaters and operators of personal watercraft to avoid collisions with these large marine mammals by:
- Wearing polarized sunglasses to help spot manatees in the water.
- Watching for large, flat circles on the water’s surface indicating the presence of manatees.
- Looking for snouts just above the surface.
- Slowing down when the presence of manatees is indicated.