Monitoring Manatee Zones With The JSO

May 24, 2013

With Memorial Day weekend upon us more people will be hitting the waters of Jacksonville Duval County in their boats.

There are 30,000 registered boaters in Duval County. The Jacksonville Sheriff's office, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission and other law enforcement agencies held a press conference on Friday to remind boaters about the manatee protection zones and to boat safely.

There are several zones along the St. Johns River and the Intracoastal Waterway in Jacksonville. They are all clearly marked.

Last year four manatees were killed in Jacksonville waters. The good news is through education and tougher enforcement that number is down dramatically. In 2009 14 manatees were killed.

A recent survey by Jacksonville University found 141 manatees including 11 calves in area waters.

These guys had the bad timing to be going too fast while the JSO took the media on a tour of the zone near the Hart and Mathews bridges: