Manatee Migration Update: February 5, 1997How Now Sea Cow!!
Welcome to Journey North's first online update on the Florida Manatee (Trichechus manatus latirostris), which is sometimes called the "Sea Cow".
Manatee or Mermaid?
Adult manatees average about 10 feet long and weigh between 800 to 1,200 pounds. Despite their size, however, the manatees are in danger and their future remains uncertain. Paddle along with us as we explore the life and times of this gentle giant.
Manatees on the Move
As you will soon discover, each manatee has a unique history and you will get to know them as individuals over the coming months. The five manatees include three females named "Marmontel", "Mercury" and "March", who were all tagged last March, 1995. March is now with a calf. There are two males: "Sonny", who was tagged in February, 1992 and "Dakota", an orphan who was rescued and then released from captivity in August, 1996.
Here's the latest report from the Sirenia Project:
To: Journey North
We suggest keeping a journal over the next months. As you read each report, make a list of all the questions you have about manatees. For example, as you analyze today's data you might ask yourself these questions:
Secondly, plan to clip the weather map from your newspaper each day. These daily maps will be useful when you analyze the data in each report.
"Bartrum?...Here!", "Brutus?...Here!, Lilly?...Lilly?...."
Of the 196 manatees recorded at Blue Springs, 42 were present at Monday's Roll Call. Every day, Ranger Wayne identifies each individual manatee and marks its location in the river on his map. He also records the temperature of the river and the water in Blue Spring "Run". On Monday, temperatures were 17 C and 22.5 C respectively.
Find Blue Springs State Park on a map of Florida; it's near the town of Orange City.
Today's Manatee Challenge Question:
"The big cold front is here. The synoptic survey is scheduled "ON" for Sunday/Monday. Jan 19/20. Thanks for everyone who is going out of their way to accommodate us on this 3-day holiday weekend. All biologists and pilots and aircraft appear to be scheduled. Tampa, Florida air temps. are now predicted to be even colder than first predictions. They now predict if will get down to 33F on Saturday a.m.; relatively clear cool and lower winds for several days after. The best front in quite awhile."
These maps help tell the story. The map on the left shows temperatures on the day of the survey. The one on the right shows more typical Florida temperatures in January.(For a closer look, click on the map and it will enlarge.)
Manatee Challenge Question #1
How to Respond to Challenge Question #1: