Date: 9 December 2015. Manatee Mama and
is wonderful especially this time of the year. The windows are
opened as the weather is breezy and warm. While sitting here at my
dinette pondering life I heard a sound I've come to recognize. A
manatee was nearby.
looked out I spotted Vicky Finn slowly drifting by.
Look carefully where her tail has broken the surface of the water.
You can see a "V" shaped piece of her tail fin is missing. Thus, her
name is Vicky Finn. (If I spot 'em it's my prerogative to name
is different. After a time you will begin
to recognize the regulars that inhabit your world.
Vicky Finn does not swim alone...
FINNEGAN is off her port beam.
That blob off her left side is a baby manatee, and a
small one at that. The calf is three feet long.
Did you notice baby Finnegan in the first photograph posted? He's up
This is the life I so enjoy... looking out and viewing the wild
critters who share my waterfront is a pleasure. I wish you could be
here seeing this for yourself too. We boaters are a fortunate lot.
Those seen in Florida are West Indian manatees.
A baby manatee is called a calf. They are fun to watch. The little ones
stay close to their mamas for their first two years.
When I was younger Daddy called them the gentle giants of the waterways. They eat
sea grass, algae and mangrove leaves.
just forward of the "restaurant" (mangrove trees) Finnegan and Vicky
Finn should visit quite regularly.
Manatees mostly loll
around eating. A full grown West Indian manatee weighs
approximately 1,200 pounds. They eat 10% of their body weight
each day. That's a lot of greens!
Manatees prefer warm
*Brackish is a
combination of salt and fresh water.
Often there are
LITTLE FISH swimming along with the
manatees. Also please note that just a bit of the manatee's back
is above the surface of the water. It is important in warm
waters (over 60 degrees) that we as boaters be aware of manatees
and avoid them.
Manatees swim at between
three and five miles per hour. They are identified by the
scars on their backs.
Just before swimming away the duo took a breath of fresh air. Aren't
Someday I hope to see Vicky Finn and Finnegan again.
before it was against the law you could swim with them. Manatees are
a curious lot and will look at you as much as you look at them. Then
they will swim off and resume feeding. They are found in warm waters
and the Caribbean. Watch for 'em.
It is illegal
to harm, harass or otherwise
bother manatees. Look but no touching!
Have you ever seen manatee in person? Was there a calf present too?
Where was it? (One of my favorite things about the St. Johns River was the
© 2015, 2018
Dealing with Drunks (tool locker and
dinette table) ~
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