Florida wildlife officials are reminding local boaters to slow down and be on the lookout for manatees as they begin their annual trek toward warmer water.
A Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission news release says the state has seen more than 6,000 manatees in rivers, bays and coastal waters this season.
November is Manatee Awareness Month.
Wildlife officials stress the fact that boaters who look out for manatees and follow protection zones are contributing to the conservation of the threatened species.
The seasonal manatee protection zones go into effect in the fall, depending on the county.
The zones are marked by waterway signs.