Manatee Explores Waters Off New Jersey & Delaware

An endangered animal rarely seen in our area drew people to the banks of the Delaware River this week.

Delaware and New Jersey wildlife officials warned boaters to keep a lookout for a manatee that was spotted in the Chesapeake and Delaware Canal then the Delaware River near Bordentown, New Jersey over the past couple weeks.

The manatee has been spotted a few times in the river. There was also a spotting in Barnegat Bay near Toms River but it's unclear if that's the same mammal.

Cpl. John McDerby of the Division of Fish and Wildlife Natural Resources Police in Delaware said the 7-foot manatee was spotted at the Summit North Marina in Bear last week. McDerby said it's rare for the creature, a native of Florida, to travel this far north.

McDerby said boaters who spot a manatee should slow down their vessel and keep a safe distance away from the manatee since the animals are considered endangered.

Some experts claim that manatees just like to explore and that once the weather (and water) turns colder they head back south.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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