About Webster

Gender: Male
Current Tag Id:

Webster was born to Charlotte the manatee at SeaWorld in Orlando, FL, on 10/17/91. He weighed 60 lbs and was 102 cm long. Since then he has also spent time at SeaWorld in California before returning to SeaWorld Orlando. Webster is now 307 cm long and weighs 1445 lbs. Webster was released at Blue Spring State Park on Tuesday, 2/15/11, by SeaWorld Florida, Blue Spring staff and volunteers, and Sea To Shore Alliance, and given a yellow and orange tag.

  1. 01/12/2012 08:32 PM
    • Webster had lost his tag some months ago and we had been unable to relocate him.  Several aerial flights were conducted to listen for his belt along the St. Johns River from Blue Spring up to Jacksonville and many hours were spent searching for him by boat, but no signal was ever detected. Sadly, FWC notified us that Webster's carcass was recovered late on Tuesday, 12/27/11, in the St. Johns River near Jacksonville University, Jacksonville, FL.  The necropsy showed that his carcass was badly decomposed but skin and organs were still intact. He weighed 459.5 kg (consider this is an approximate weight, due to stage of decomposition), and measured 307 cm total straight length. His freeze brands were visible, and belt with antenna was present, though it had twisted to a position where the VHF was on his ventral side instead of his dorsal, so that would probably explain why the signal was never heard during Sea To Shore’s flights to locate him. External findings included a thin body condition with a flat ventrum, severe cold stress in the skin (epidermis severely thickened, spongy, raw, and with numerous microscopic lesions), and one healed propeller scar series. Internal findings included depletion of fats, a mostly empty GI tract with some ingested sand and mud, dried-out feces, and some acute changes in the kidneys and lungs that probably occurred in the agonal phase before death. The cause of death was determined as Natural; Cold Stress. Please note that except for one manatee that was on his way back from Alabama and a few small dependent calves in Brevard County, we have not observed any cold-related mortality in sub-adult and adult manatees at this time. Martine deWit of FWC stated that she would consider it unusual to see an adult manatee with this severe cold stress when weather has been relatively mild, and speculate that naivety lead to poor habitat selection, hypothermia, stress, and starvation.
      On a ‘positive’ note, a high concentration of spermatozoa (that were now falling apart due to age and decomposition) were seen under the microscope, so hopefully he was able to pass on his genes.
  2. 12/03/2011 10:51 PM
    • Webster was last seen in September at the entrance to Deep Creek in the Hastings area.

  3. 10/25/2011 11:00 PM
    • We are continuing to search for Webster throughout the St. Johns River. 

  4. 09/15/2011 10:49 PM
    • He socialized and traveled north in the St. Johns on Friday, 9/09/11. He was with 4 other animals. On Wednesday, 9/14/11, his tag was discovered in that area. We are searching for Webster and hoping to re-tag him as soon as possible.
  5. 09/06/2011 03:44 PM
    • 8/12/11-9/06/11: Webster milled and traveled by himself in a cove near Hog Island north of Lake George on Monday, 8/15/11.  He looks good and has 3 very light, shallow scars on his left lower back.  On Tuesday, 8/23/11, he bottom-rested by himself in Murphy Creek.  Gas was seen from him during the visual.  He traveled and milled by himself in the San Mateo area east of Murphy Creek on Monday, 8/29/11.

      7/26/11-8/11/11: He milled and bottom-rested by himself on Tuesday, 8/02/11, in Welaka in an oxbow south of Shell Harbor.  Gas was seen from him during the visual, indicating he has been feeding.

      7/12/11-7/25/11: He cavorted and socialized with five other animals on the east bank of Buzzard Roost Cove on Friday, 7/15/11.  On Friday, 7/22/11, he milled and socialized with two other animals in Mud Creek Cove in Little Lake George.

      6/24/11-7/11/11: Webster was observed on Monday, 6/27/11, in the southeast section of Lake George, socializing and possibly feeding with at least 3 other animals.  On Wednesday, 7/06/11, he was bottom-resting with 2 other animals near the center of Lake George.

      6/02/11-6/23/11: On Sunday, 6/05/11, Webster milled and socialized with 6 other animals, including Lil Joe and Slip, along the south shore of Lake Dexter.  He socialized with 7 other animals in Blue Creek south of Lake George on Wednesday, 6/15/11.  This is a Slow Speed area with plentiful vegetation available.  On Monday, 6/20/11, he milled along the bank of southern Lake George by himself.

      5/16/11-6/01/11: Webster milled and possibly fed with three other animals in Tick Island Creek on Sunday, 5/22/11.

      4/23/11-5/15/11: Webster was seen milling, traveling, and socializing with three other animals in the cove west of Lake Dexter on Monday, 4/25/11.  On Sunday, 5/01/11, he was in Eph Creek near Lake Dexter, milling and likely feeding on submerged vegetation by himself.  He milled and fed on unknown vegetation by himself near the shore north of Lake Dexter on Sunday, 5/08/11.  Gas was observed from him during the visual, confirming that he has been feeding.

      4/11/11-4/21/11: On Friday, 4/15/11, Webster socialized with at least 11 other animals in the cove west of Lake Dexter.  Lots of vegetation is available there, and many more animals were in the area.

      3/25/11-4/10/11: Webster was seen on Saturday, 3/26/11, south of the Astor bridge, socializing and cavorting with 4 other animals.  At one point the group traveled to the side of the channel away from a boat.  He milled, traveled, and briefly socialized with 2 other animals north of Lake Dexter on Sunday, 4/03/11.  On Sunday, 4/10/11, Webster milled and traveled close to shore in response to boats just north of Lake Dexter.  Four other animals were nearby. 

      3/11/11-3/24/11: Webster socialized, milled, and fed on underwater vegetation along the northern shore of Lake Dexter on Tuesday, 3/15/11, with 11 other animals.  On Friday, 3/18/11, he socialized and briefly participated in a cavorting group with at least 8 other animals in northern Lake Dexter.

      3/01/11-3/10/11: On Monday, 3/07/11, he was seen just west of Lake Dexter with 5 other animals.  They socialized, milled, cavorted briefly, and avoided boats passing by.

  6. 04/20/2011 08:17 PM
    • 2/15/11-2/28/11: He was seen on Tuesday, 2/22/11, milling and traveling with Little Joe at the side of the main channel of the river near Stagger Mud Lake.

Data map is currently not present for Webster.