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Fort Myers in Lee County, Florida — The American South (South Atlantic)
 

Tracking Manatees

 
 
Tracking Manatees Marker image. Click for full size.
By Sandra Hughes, October 16, 2015
1. Tracking Manatees Marker
Inscription.  Discovering travel patterns and habits of manatees helps researchers understand them and helps State and Federal Agencies protect them. There are several different ways researchers track manatee travels.

Photo Identification
Photo-identification uses the unique pattern of markings on a manatee’s trunk and tail fluke to identify an individual animal. In Florida, these markings are primarily scars from accidental encounters with boats; however entanglements in fishing gear, cold stress lesions, and fungal infections also can cause scarring. Photo histories allow scientist to tract manatees over time and provide information on the status of the Florida manatee.

Aerial Surveys
Aerial distributional and synoptic surveys provide information on where manatees are found, how many are in a particular area, and how they use habitats and total population. Aerial distribution surveys are used to determine the where manatees are located at different times during the year and relative abundance of manatees. These surveys are most commonly flown every two weeks for two years. Synoptic surveys are aerial surveys that cover

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all the manatee’s know wintering habitats in Florida. Manatees are counted during the coldest months because they congregate near warm-water sites. Synoptic surveys provide a population estimate for the Florida manatee throughout its whole range.

Radio Tagging
Researchers attach radio telemetry tags to manatees to observe travel patterns. A belt, which is connected to a floating tag, is attached around the base of the tail. A satellite transmitter in the tag sends signals to weather satellites. Each tag has a different color band combination so manatees can be identified by sight. Researchers use the data to document behavior, associations with other manatees, and reproductive success of females.
 
Location. 26° 41.59′ N, 81° 46.666′ W. Marker is in Fort Myers, Florida, in Lee County. Marker is on Palm Beach Boulevard. Marker is located inside park. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 10901 Palm Beach Blvd, Fort Myers FL 33905, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Relatives and Relationships (here, next to this marker); Manatee Young (here, next to this marker); Pine Flatwoods Habitat (here, next to this marker); Scrub Oak Habitat (here, next to this marker); Responsible Fishing (here, next to this marker); Boating with Wildlife

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(here, next to this marker); Mangroves - Trees of the Sea (here, next to this marker); Munching Manatees (here, next to this marker). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Fort Myers.
 
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Credits. This page was last revised on August 30, 2017. This page originally submitted on August 7, 2017, by Sandra Hughes of Killen, Alabama, USA. This page has been viewed 97 times since then and 12 times this year. Photo   1. submitted on August 7, 2017, by Sandra Hughes of Killen, Alabama, USA. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page.
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