Havre de Grace police are used to fielding calls when strange things are found floating down the river or in the bay.
On Saturday, those calls poured in to the police department in droves as residents of the waterside city reported seeing a strange creature paddling in the waters where the mouth of the Susquehanna River meets the top of the Chesapeake Bay.
This wasn’t a dusky shark, like the one once caught by a fisherman off the Promenade, or an Atlantic sturgeon, like the 8-foot long specimen that once washed up on the shore at Rock Run, or even Chessie, the mythic, serpentine Chesapeake Bay sea monster.
It was a manatee, also known as a sea cow, evidently on tour from Florida and drawn by curiousity and warming water into the upper reaches of the Chesapeake Bay.
A Havre de Grace police officer was able to take photos and video of the manatee as it surfaced and meandered around a local marina. Marine mammal rescue experts from the National Aquarium at Baltimore were quickly called upon to survey the situation and recommend remediation.
Every few years a manatee makes its way up the coast from Florida, occassionally popping up in a local waterway before moving on to waters as far north as New York City and Cape Cod.
Boaters should generally take caution and keep an eye out for large floating mammals in local waters – be they manatee or man.
Here are a few photos taken and provided by the Havre de Grace Police Department.
And here’s some more information about the National Aquarium in Baltimore’s Marine Animal Rescue Program:
The Aquarium is a regional and international leader in the quest to improve the health of the world’s oceans. We participate in a variety of cooperative programs, and have initiated many programs of our own to help preserve the health of our oceans.
The Marine Animal Rescue Program (MARP) is the cornerstone of the Aquarium’s ocean health initiative. MARP rescues, rehabilitates, and releases marine animals.
MARP has successfully rescued, treated, and returned seals, dolphins, porpoises, pilot whales, pygmy sperm whales, sea turtles, and a manatee to their natural habitats—led by only a handful of paid staff and a network of well-trained volunteers.
Finally, after all the political hoop-la-la going on in Harford County these days, a gentle giant arrives.
Nice pics. Thanks Brian for sharing.
Delegate Dan Riley says
But does this immigrant from the South speak English?
Don’t know about that Delegate Riley, but I did hear he had a MD driver’s license 🙂
When I first saw the pictures, I thought it was this girl I dated in High School…
then I remembered that she couldn’t swim…
I actually saw a flyer being passed around for manatee fishing charters.
Someone named Captian Dan. Has a number to call and a picture of a manatee on a hook.
I think Havre de Grace should use the manatee’s visit into their marketing for tourism. “Havre de Grace”—even manatees want to visit.”
And yeah, it is a refreshing story amongst all the poltiical bickering.
We need a comprehensive program to keep the manatee infestation from continueing. We can not send him back to Florida for fear he might tell the other Manatees how wonderful it is here and they will take over the place. We need to close off the borders before it is too late. (sarcasam intended)
Uh oh, this manatee IS from Florida. I bet he speaks Spanish. Let’s hope Pat McDonough doesn’t catch wind of this–he’ll probably have him harpooned!
Pat McDonough is not against people speaking Spanish or any otther language. Just to make sure people learn to use English for their own benefit.
And here I thought a story about a manatee in the marina in HDG would be a McDonough Free Zone…
“Just when you thought it was safe to go back in the water…”
Well, both McDonough and the manatee are large mammals with a propensity to make waves, cause a commotion just by showing up, and judging from the other mammals at the Aquarium, enjoy being a spectacle.
I don’t know if manatees are as full of self-righteousness and hot air though. After thinking about this a bit, it is probably unfair to compare McDonough to a manatee. Manatees deserve better than that.
Whether you like McDonough’s politics or not, you have to admit that he is one mean-spirited dude.
Joseph Caruso says
I read McDonough’s letter to the editor in today’s Aegis quite compelling and absent any malice or what you call “mean-spiritedness”.
In fact, you have used a tired old ploy to misdirect folks from the issue at hand by making an ugly personal attack against McDonough and for this you should be ashamed. You can certainly disagree or dislike McDonough but to attack him, I think not. It makes you an anonymous and cowardly bully.
Growing up neat Towanda Pa in the upper Susquehanna, i remember a news clipping of a Manatee in the 50’s or so.it was originally reported as a sea monster, I’ve always wondered what happened to this creature after towanda residents caught it