Mortally wounded manatee discovered in St. James City
A manatee was discovered floating in the water of a canal in Flamingo Bay Sunday.
According to data collected by the biologists from Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, the mortality rate for manatees has surpassed past records. During 2009 FWC documented the deaths of 419 manatees in Florida waters – now plus one.
The dead animal was retrieved by officials with FWC and the agency has preliminarily determined that the cause of death due to collision with a boat. The female manatee weighed 1,125 pounds and measured approximately 10 feet in length.
According to Wendy Quigley with FWC, this manatee was among the 94 to succumb to injuries sustained from boat collisions this year. FWC is continuing to examine the manatee to see if there also were any pathological reasons for the animal’s death.
“Our office, unfortunately, receives a lot of calls about injured manatees and it is very helpful that anyone who has either accidentally hit a manatee with their boat or finds one that is distressed, injured or deceased to call our Wildlife Alert Line,” said Quigley. “This year we have seen the highest numbers of manatee fatalities on record and we appreciate calls from the public alerting us to these kinds of incidences.”
It is believed that the manatee found in the waters of Flamingo Bay in St. James City had been struck and injured by a boat in Matlacha Pass and floated into the canal after it died.
To report an injured or dead manatee, call 1-888-404-3922.