More Manatee Viewing

Wednesday January 25th 2017

It was another nice January day in Florida. I don’t take that for granted. It is one of the reasons I adopted this nomadic life style. I can be where the weather is more comfortable in the winter and the summer. The storm front that passed through here Sunday into Monday as heavy rainstorms hit the northeast as a wintery mess. My last winter in New England, the 2014-2015 winter, was a record for cold and snow. It helped spur the move into the motorhome.

When I leave here next week I’ll be going north to go west. I anticipate much cooler temperatures and more rain. As long as I stay on the southern route along Interstate 10, I should be OK. Ice is and a little snow is possible, but I’ll watch the forecast and hole up for a day or two as necessary.

Today was focused on house cleaning. I dragged the vacuum cleaner hose and attachments out of the basement and chased the dust bunnies around the floor. For the last month I’ve had the windows open during the day while staying in dusty locations. Things inside got a good coating of wind born dust. I need to pickup some furniture polish to help clean the dust from the counters and woodwork. I don’t carry a mop, so I had to get the big sponge and a bucket to wash down some of the floor. I may live in a motorhome, but I still have to clean.

wnd1

A manatee nose on the left and a tail on the right. The picture was a few seconds late for the whole back that goes with the tail.

This afternoon I made another trip over to the Manatee Viewing area to get my nature fix for the day. The manatees were near the viewing area, but not right beside it. It was possible to see some of the identifying scars on the back of a couple of them. Naturalists keep track of the manatees by recording the patterns of scar tissue caused by boat props on the animals backs. Even though I see lots of signs on waterways warning to boaters to travel at idle speed and be on the lookout for manatees, they continue to be hit by boats.

wnd2

Two manatees in the glare from the sun. The one on the left has three parallel white scars and the one on the right has a single white scar.

I spent about an hour watching the manatees and fish in the cooling canal. There were fewer visitors at the view center today. One of the retired power plant employees that volunteer at the center indicated that the mild winter thus far was thought to be the reason the number of manatee was lower than usual. With January coming to an end, the temperature is going to start to go up. This may be a slow year overall for manatee. When the gulf and rivers remain warm enough they will stay in those locations because there is food. The cooling canal doesn’t have anything for them to feed on.

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