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Outdoors news and notes: Be watchful of manatees, hiking day

Making news

boaters beware, manatees are migrating

Cold fronts put manatees on the move looking for warmer water in places such as freshwater springs and canals near power plants, so state officials want boaters and anglers to be watchful.

Adult manatees, which can weigh up to 1,000 pounds, may look blubbery, but water temperatures of 68 degrees and lower can be harmful and even deadly to these marine mammals.

Because of the seasonal migration, November has been designated Manatee Awareness Month. In many areas of the state, seasonal manatee protection zones went into effect Thursday.

State law enforcement officers with the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) want boaters to be aware of the slow zones and signs of manatees. Boaters should post a lookout on the bow to scan for repetitive swirl patterns, a mud trail, or a snout or fluke breaking the water's surface.

Boaters can also help these creatures by keeping to marked channels, wearing polarized sunglasses to improve vision in the water, obeying posted speeds, and using poles, paddles or trolling motors when traveling close to manatees. For a complete list of manatee regulations, go to www.flrules.org.

Take a hike

The weather is great this time of year, but if you still need an excuse to get outside, Saturday is National Take a Hike Day. To find a hiking trail near you, visit the Florida Greenways and Trails website at dep.state.fl.us/gwt/guide.

Send news Terry Tomalin at ttomalin@tampabay.com or call (727) 893-8808.

Solunar chart

AM PM

Minor Major Minor Major

11/16 7:20 1:10 7:55 1:40

11/17 8:25 2:15 9:00 2:45

11/18 9:20 3:15 10:05 3:45

11/19 10:20 4:10 10:55 4:40

11/20 11:25 5:15 11:50 5:35

11/21 0 5:50 12:00 6:15

11/22 12:30 6:35 12:45 6:55

Tide adjustments

The charts show the rise and fall of tides measured in feet and plots the tides on a one-week timeline. Times and depth may vary depending on weather conditions. You can compute the tides from these adjustments:

North (Anclote River) High Low

Anclote Key (south end) -01:37 -00:47

Bayport +01:13 +01:39

Cedar Key +01:16 +01:03

Crystal River, Florida Power +01:13 +01:33

Hudson, Hudson Creek +00:06 +00:01

Indian Rocks Beach (inside) +00:19 +00:10

North (Anclote River) High Low

Mangrove Point, Crystal Bay +01:34 +01:54

Pithlachascotee River +00:18 +00:52

St. Joseph Sound -00:34 -00:42

Steinhatchee River entrance +01:33 +01:32

Suwannee River entrance +01:22 +01:21

Withlacoochee River entrance +01:23 +01:58

South (The Pier) High Low

Anna Maria, pier -02:10 -02:19

Egmont Key, Egmont channel -02:15 -03:20

Gandy Bridge +00:59 +00:57

Gulfport, Boca Ciega Bay -01:32 -01:05

John's Pass, Boca Ciega Bay -02:14 -02:04

Madeira Beach Causeway -01:32 -01:45

Mullet Key Channel (Skyway) -02:03 -02:01

South (The Pier) High Low

Pass-a-Grille Beach -01:34 -01:30

Pinellas Point -00:22 -00:29

Redfish Point, Manatee River -00:30 -00:14

Safety Harbor +01:32 +01:34

Sarasota Bay -01:38 -00:58

Corey Causeway -01:18 -00:44

Venice Inlet (inside) -02:02 -01:38

Outdoors news and notes: Be watchful of manatees, hiking day 11/15/12 [Last modified: Thursday, November 15, 2012 7:27pm]
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