What to Do When You See a Manatee

August 13, 2020 7:24 am Published by Leave your thoughts

We’re surrounded by beautiful and majestic marine creatures here in Florida. Although they’re not the best-known animals, one of the best treats to see when you’re on the water is a manatee. Due to human activity, pollution and a host of other environmental factors, manatees are considered a “threatened” species, which is why we need to take extra care when we see them. This post will cover what to do when you see a manatee during your boat rental in Venice, FL:

  • Slow down: If you’re driving a boat or jet ski when you see a manatee, lay off the throttle. Boats are the number one cause of manatee deaths, because they’re typically unable to get out of the way when a boat approaches. Additionally, keep an eye out for manatee protection area signs, as these are an indicator that manatees may be close by.
  • Stay calm: Seeing a manatee can be exciting, especially for younger children or people who have never seen one before. Though you may be tempted to jump or shout, remain calm and quiet. Loud noises may startle the manatee and motivate it to leave the area and swim out into harm’s way.
  • Observe from a distance: Manatees are to be appreciated from a distance. Don’t pursue or approach the manatee for any reason. After all, the closer you get to the manatee with your boat, the greater the risk of injury for the manatee.
  • Appreciate the moment: Finally, take it all in! As mentioned above, manatees are considered “threatened” under the Endangered Species Act. There are only about 6,500 manatees currently living in the United States, so you never know when you might get another chance to see one.

What not to do when you see a manatee

Knowing what you shouldn’t do when you see a manatee is just as important as knowing what to do. Avoid the following behavior during your boat rentals in Venice, FL:

  • Feed: Tossing a few snacks in the water for the manatee might seem like a good idea. Those big creatures need food, too, right? In fact, feeding manatees human food will disrupt their digestive systems and cause more harm than good.
  • Touch: As we discussed above, manatees should be enjoyed from a distance. Curious manatees may approach your boat while you’re out on the water. Do not interpret this as an invitation to touch or pet them. Even though you’re not trying to hurt them, oil from your hands could cause harm.
  • Chase: After visiting with you for a few minutes, your new manatee friend will probably start to slowly swim away. Take that as a sign that it’s time to move on—don’t go chasing after it. Following the manatee will scare it off, possibly leading it right into danger.

If you’re a manatee lover and you want to see one up close, rent a boat from Cool Breeze Boats and Jet Ski Rentals. Nobody beats our selection or prices for boat rentals in Venice, FL!

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