Since July and 2012, a total of 220 manatees have died in the lagoon in Brevard County, about 100 of them under mysterious circumstances; and since February, between 250 and 300 dead pelicans have been found in the same area.
Photographer: CHRISTOPHER ARNOLD, Scripps Treasure Coast Newspapers
Copyright 2013 Scripps Media, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
MIAMI (AP) -- As manatees begin their annual migration to warmer waters, state wildlife officials are cautioning boaters to slow down and watch out for these slow-moving mammals.
The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission said in a statement Friday that the migration is the animals' instinctual response to winter's approach.
The commission says boaters can help protect the species often found feeding in shallow sea grass beds by slowing down and following posted speed zones across the state. Many season manatee protection zones go into effect Nov. 15.
November is also Manatee Awareness Month and the manatee is Florida's official state marine mammal.
The FWC asks residents and visitors to report sick, injured, entangled or dead manatees to wildlife officials.
Copyright 2010 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
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