Record number of manatees counted at Blue Spring State Park
ORLANDO, Fla. — Blue Spring State Park staff recently counted a record number of manatees in their waters. The river temp was 59F (15C) and the park counted 663 manatees - a new record! Blue Spring State Park provides underwater and above-water web cameras offering a constant view of manatee activity in the spring. For more information on manatees at Blue Spring State Park, click here. Expand Autoplay Image 1 of 11 Record number of manatees counted at Blue Spring State Park Blue Spring State Park staff recently counted a record number of manatees in their waters.wftv.com
Resourceful Florida manatee frees self after lengthy bicycle tire entanglement
Fish and Wildlife Service, and Jacksonville Zoo and Gardens have all tried rescue attempts to separate "Schwinn" from the tire trap, to no avail. The naturally suspicious Schwinn steered well clear of any and all rescue boats (and who can blame the creature for wanting to avoid a species that throws whole bicycle tires into rivers? ).Researchers aren't exactly certain how the manatee made the daring escape but — are you ready for this sadness? — the tire had been somewhat weakened by a boat propeller that struck Schwinn in February. This manatee is a hero.Schwinn unfortunately has deep scars from the lengthy period of tire encirclement, but other than that, seems to be doing as well as can be expected, and quite contented to vacation in Blue Spring State Park.orlandoweekly.com
Free Wheelie: Manatee returns to Blue Spring without tire around waist
ORANGE CITY, Fla. – A manatee that a year ago was seen swimming around Blue Spring State Park with a bicycle tire cinching its waist has returned to the crystal clear waters free of the trap. Officials from Save the Manatee Club said Friday they don’t know how the manatee managed to shake the tire lose but they mentioned that Wheelie, as the manatee was called by the public, was struck by a boat’s propeller in February and that strike cut and weakened the tire. Also called Schwinn by researchers, the manatee now has deep scars around its midsection where the bike tire was once entangled. Wheelie the manatee now has scars from where a bike tire was stuck around its waist. Save the Manatee Club manatee research associate Cora Berchem first spotted Wheelie on Wednesday on an above-water livestreaming webcam.
Blue Spring State Park back open to visitors
Blue Spring State Park in Volusia County announced on its Facebook page it is now back open to visitors as of May 8 with limited capacity. “Once we reach capacity, we will not allow entry to any more visitors for the rest of the day.”The park’s spring run is open to water activities. Restrooms in the day use area are open to visitors but the campground and cabins will remain closed for now, park officials said. The park encourages visitors to continue to practice social distancing as they welcome visitors back. Effective Friday, May 8, Blue Spring State Park is open with limited capacity.
Save the Manatee Club in need of manatee observers at Blue Spring State Park
The Save the Manatee Club, in partnership with Blue Spring State Park, Clearwater Marine Aquarium Research Institute and Volusia County, is in need of volunteers to be manatee observers. The volunteer program operates from March to November at Blue Spring State Park because that is “swim season” when park visitors may come in contact with manatees. The volunteers are there to “help prevent manatee harassment and to educate visitors about proper behavior around manatees. Two mandatory training sessions are scheduled at Blue Spring State Park on March 5 and March 14 at 10 a.m. for two to three hours. To sign up, email firstname.lastname@example.org with your preferred training date and whether you’d like a kayak training session.
Manatee season in full swing; Florida state park sees record day
Blue Spring State Park recorded an all-time high of 566 manatees on their daily morning count in early January, and usually see around 600 individuals throughout the season. That number came close to the usual 600 individual manatees usually counted in an entire season at Blue Spring. They were all ready to warm up, said Michael Watkins, park manager of that banner day. Despite the high number of manatees at the beginning of January, the critters have not gathered in such numbers throughout this winter season. I would say counts (right now) are below average, just because its a warmer season, Watkins said.dailycommercial.com
Manatee season in full swing; Florida state park sees record day
Blue Spring State Park recorded an all-time high of 566 manatees on their daily morning count in early January, and usually see around 600 individuals throughout the season. That number came close to the usual 600 individual manatees usually counted in an entire season at Blue Spring. They were all ready to warm up, said Michael Watkins, park manager of that banner day. Despite the high number of manatees at the beginning of January, the critters have not gathered in such numbers throughout this winter season. I would say counts (right now) are below average, just because its a warmer season, Watkins said.ocala.com
Manatee season in full swing; Blue Spring sees record day
That number came close to the usual 600 individual manatees usually counted in an entire season at Blue Spring. "They were all ready to warm up," said Michael Watkins, park manager of that banner day. So they travel from far and wide to Blue Spring, which basically acts as a warm bath for them. "I would say counts (right now) are below average, just because its a warmer season," Watkins said. But their overall population has rebounded significantly since the early 1970s, when fewer than 40 of them made their way to Blue Spring each winter.news-journalonline.com
Wheelie! Manatee with tire stuck around belly spotted again at state park
ORANGE CITY, Fla. – A manatee with a bicycle tire wrapped around its stomach was spotted again Thursday at Blue Spring State Park in Orange City. The manatee, nicknamed Wheelie, was first seen at the park last month. A group of wildlife experts worked for days to catch the manatee but were not successful. The manatee was spotted Thursday on the Save the Manatee camera at Blue Spring State Park, and the sea cow still had the tire around its belly. Officials with the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission say workers have been made aware and are monitoring the situation.
The Florida manatee stuck inside a bike tire has reappeared at Blue Spring State Park
On Jan. 30, volunteers with Save the Manatee counted 421 manatees at the park.Officials have been notified and are monitoring the manatee. To report an injured manatee in Florida, call 1-888-404-3922. Our small but mighty local team works tirelessly to bring you high-quality, uncensored news and cultural coverage of Central Florida. Unlike many newspapers, ours is free and we'd like to keep it that way, because we believe, now more than ever, everyone deserves access to accurate, independent coverage of their community. Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing pledge, your support helps keep Orlandos true free pressorlandoweekly.com
Attempts to rescue manatee stuck in tire foiled by pollution, other factors
VOLUSIA COUNTY, Fla. – Crews in Volusia County faced complicated conditions Tuesday while working to capture a manatee stuck in a tire at Blue Spring State Park, according to wildlife officials. The tire poses a risk to the manatee because “the animal is continuing to grow and the tire is not,” park ranger Michael Watkins said. A manatee is spotted Fernandina Beach with what appears to be a bicycle tire around its belly. FWC and SeaWorld spent hours trying to rescue a manatee that has a bike tire around its waist. “The SeaWorld Rescue team were sent out this morning to assist FWC with this rescue – the team was not successful in getting this manatee, but we will continue our efforts when requested again by FWC,” a SeaWorld Orlando spokesperson said.
Beloved Central Florida manatee Dix found dead after watercraft collision
click to enlarge screengrab via Save the Manatees/YouTubeDix the manatee, one of the stars of Blue Spring State Park, was recently found dead in DeLand, just north of the springs.After assessing her injuries, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission says that she died from an acute watercraft collision.Dix rose to fame by bringing three calves into the Blue Spring area, fearlessly hanging around an alligator, and being an overall friendly creature adored by visitors and locals alike.The death of this popular manatee highlights an escalating problem: More manatees than usual are getting struck and killed by boats.According to the FWC, Volusia County has the third highest watercraft-related manatee death rate in Florida, behind only Lee and Broward counties. Over 120 manatees died because of collisions in 2018, according to the FWCs manatee mortality report "The number of manatees getting hit by boats this year has really gone up. Overall, we had 300 manatees being killed this year, and out of those, 81 of those manatees were killed by boats," Cora Bercham of the Save the Manatee Club said to Spectrum News As manatee populations increase in Blue Spring and surrounding areas, watercraft-related manatee deaths also increase, according to Berchem. Summer is when manatees migrate, so they are not as concentrated in springs as they are during manatee season.orlandoweekly.com