Florida Manatees in the Northern Gulf of Mexico
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Thursday, November 9, 2017

FSU Coastal & Marine Lab Auditorium, 3618 Coastal Highway 98, St. Teresa, FL 32358

Florida Manatees in the Northern Gulf of Mexico

Why Do Some Go West? 

By Jim Reid

Conservation Lecture Series --Enhancing Global Coastal Literacy in Florida

7 pm – 8 pm

Free & Open to the Public

Refreshments available before talk

Sightings of Florida manatees (Trichechus manatus latirostris) in the northern Gulf of Mexico (NGOM) have been increasing, but their distribution, movements, and resource use have not been well documented. USGS researchers have a long history conducting studies on manatees in the NGOM and are currently documenting the extent of migrations and determining patterns of habitat use for the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management. Tools being used to create maps of functional habitat types include capturing and assessing the health of manatees that use this region, documenting individuals through photo-id, interpreting their movements through satellite telemetry, and investigating use areas. Additionally, detailed assessments of the underlying habitat components (i.e., water body, physical characteristics, water quality, vegetation species assemblages, etc...) contribute to our knowledge of manatee habitat use and movement patterns within the region. This information will help managers in the NGOM understand and protect this federally-threatened species.   

About the Speaker:  Jim Reid is a biologist at the USGS Wetland and Aquatic Research Center in Gainesville, FL. Since 1983, he has studied manatees for the USGS's Sirenia Project, a federal research effort on-going since 1974 to understand manatee biology and inform management and recovery efforts. His interests include the use of GPS, satellite and VHF radio tagging and tracking techniques in field-based studies of manatees; seagrass mapping and characterization studies to assess benthic habitats; photo-identification and behavioral observations on individual manatees; and cooperation on international studies of sirenians.


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