The population of manatees is at a record high. Help us continue to improve the survival of these endangered species by following these fishing and boating safety tips inspired by the Lee County Natural Resources Division.
Manatees should be appreciated from afar. We understand that they’re irresistibly cute, however, human touch can cause them harm. So, please, “look, but don’t touch.”
It is important to properly dispose of trash including fishing lines and plastic bags. Manatees could consume or get mangled in loose litter. If swallowed, trash can cause sea turtles digestive disturbances or death by choking. Do you like fishing line and plastic bags with your dinner? We don’t. Please, don’t be a litter bug.
DON’T Accelerate over Shallow Seagrass Beds
Would you want someone running a motorized vehicle through your home? Instead, use a pole, paddle or trolling motor when passing over shallow seagrass beds. Manatees live here.
DO Wear Polarized Sunglasses
They don’t call this the Sunshine State for nothing. On a clear, summer day, it’s bright on the Gulf. Polarized lenses makes it easier for boaters to see things under the water’s surface including manatees.
DO Slow Down
Manatees are not fast in the water, which makes it hard for them to avoid approaching watercrafts. Speeding through ‘Manatee Zones’ could be fatal to these creatures. Plus, speeding through shallow areas can tear up your watercraft.
Emergency Wildlife Information
Together, we can make Southwest Florida safer for manatees and other wildlife in and out of the Gulf. At Port Sanibel Marina, we are committed to improving wildlife conservation by educating boaters and fishers.
If you find an injured, deceased or harassed manatee, please call the Florida Wildlife Conservation Commission at 1-888-404-FWCC (3922) – Cellular phone *FWC or #FWC.