Report a Sick, Injured, Dead, or Tagged Manatee
Call FWC's Wildlife Alert Toll-Free Number: 1-888-404-FWCC (1-888-404-3922), press "7" to speak with an operator.
Cellular phone customers: *FWC or #FWC
The core rescue equipment that biologists use to rescue manatees includes specialized capture boats, large nets, hoop nets, and transport trucks.
Modified Florida mullet skiffs are used to capture manatees. This boat has a flat bottom design for shallow water operations, the engine near the bow to avoid net fouling with the propeller, and a large open stern and removable transom for pulling an adult manatee onboard. These boats can be used to catch a manatee near-shore or off-shore and allow for captures where the shoreline is inaccessible.
Stretch mesh twine nets are used to capture manatees. The nets are fashioned with a float line on one side which floats at the surface of the water, and a lead line on the other side which settles to the bottom of the water column.
A modified dip net can be used to capture smaller manatees. These are particularly useful for capturing orphaned calves or smaller manatees in large aggregations or in areas where a normal capture net will become fouled or won't reach the substrate.
Specialized box trucks are used to transport rescued manatees. These trucks are climate-controlled and stocked with equipment to keep the manatee safe and comfortable during transport.