High speed boating, in-water explosions, materials dumped in state waters etc., can have an impact on manatees and their habitat. In most cases of filming, a permit from the DEP is required (see DEP Water and Wetlands section). In some cases, a statutory variance from the FWC may also be needed to allow access to an area or to allow higher speedboat operation than otherwise allowed by rule.
Off Limit Areas Or Locations
There are some portions of state waters that have been designated as “motorboats prohibited” or “no entry” zones for manatee protection. However some of these designations only apply during the winter months. Please contact the FWC directly for information on these zones.
Time Limitations Or Constraints
Manatee protection zones are seasonal in some locations and may only preclude access or high speedboat filming in certain areas during the winter. In some circumstances, a variance may be issued to allow activities that would otherwise be prohibited. Due to the requirements of the variance process (§120.542, Florida Statutes), requests for a variance should be made no less than 90 days before the activity needs to be conducted.
Fish & Wildlife Conservation Commission
Managed Species – Manatees