The Manatees of Blue Spring State Park

Many of these animals exhibit scars on their backs from boat and propeller strikes, if they survive.

I recently traveled to Florida to visit friends and one of our outings took us to Blue Spring State Park where we saw about 189 manatees, according to the park’s daily count. They swim underwater, raising their heads to the surface for air every few minutes. One needs to be underwater to get the best photographs. Many of these animals exhibit scars on their backs from boat and propeller strikes, if they survive. In fact so many have scars that they are recorded to identity each animal, much like the tail fin markings on whales.

Keeping tabs on all this were an Osprey, several turtles, and an alligator.

Manatees are listed by the IUCN as a vulnerable species. This is due to a host of threats including:

Residential & commercial development

  • Housing & urban areas
  • Commercial & industrial areas
  • Tourism & recreation areas

Agriculture & aquaculture

  • Annual & perennial non-timber crops
  • Marine & freshwater aquaculture

Transportation & service corridors

  • Shipping lanes

Biological resource use

  • Fishing & harvesting aquatic resources

Human intrusions & disturbance

  • Recreational activities

Natural system modifications

  • Dams & water management/use
  • Other ecosystem modifications


  • Domestic & urban waste water
  • Industrial & military effluents
  • Agricultural & forestry effluents
  • Excess energy

Climate change & severe weather

  • Droughts
  • Temperature extremes
  • Storms & flooding

Author: Stephen Fielding Images

I'm a retired medical sociologist from the University of Rochester. Climate change is one of the two great challenges facing humanity (the other is nuclear weapons). In writing about the impact of climate change I read reputable books and articles on the topic. So when I make statements about climate change you will see a link taking you to the scientific source(s) of the information I provide. As for my independently published photobooks, each has gone through several layers of editing and peer review for both readability and accuracy. This is not to say that everything I say is accurate. Even the New York Times makes mistakes. So, if you find something that is factually incorrect, let me know. I hope you find reading my blog a positive experience. If you do, please encourage your family and friends to have a look. You can find photos from my other photo work by clicking on the My SmugMug Gallery tab, above. Best wishes, -Steve

2 thoughts on “The Manatees of Blue Spring State Park”

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: