Student artist’s design celebrates 20 years of manatee decals
Monday, March 14, 2011
Media contact: Patricia Behnke, 850-251-2130
A high school art student at Circle Christian School in Winter
Park captured top honors in the 2011-2012 manatee decal art contest
sponsored by the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission
(FWC). Bekah Scoville, 14, created an image of two manatees
swimming in water painted in pastel blues and greens.
"It is encouraging to see this young woman use her talent to
support such an important cause," FWC Commission Chairman Rodney
Barreto said. "Bekah's design will help the FWC promote the
protection of Florida's endangered state marine mammal."
Since 1992, manatee decals have been available to Floridians
registering their vessels or vehicles in exchange for a voluntary
donation. Bonnie Abellera, the FWC's manatee decal coordinator,
announced that Scoville's artwork will grace the 20th
edition of the manatee decal, with the caption "Support manatee
conservation." Decal donations raise approximately $70,000
annually for the Save the Manatee Trust Fund, which helps pay for
the FWC's conservation efforts.
The new decals with Scoville's art will be available July 1 at
county tax collectors' offices.
"I painted these manatees because I feel that they are gentle
creatures," Scoville wrote on her contest entry form. "I love the
scene of the mother and baby, and I feel that their love and
affection toward each other is lovely to display in art."
After the decals are printed, FWC staff will present Scoville
with a framed decal, an award certificate and ribbon, and a
one-year subscription to "Florida Wildlife" magazine to acknowledge
her artistic contribution to Florida's manatee conservation
program. Her art teacher, Laura Miller, submitted the
ninth-grade student's work.
Fifty-four students from 23 Florida high schools participated in
the 2011-2012 contest.
The FWC urges residents and visitors to become active partners
in ensuring a healthy future for Florida's manatees by following a
few simple guidelines:
- Provide a proper lookout for manatees when boating or enjoying
any type of watercraft in Florida.
- Slow down and obey posted speed zone signs on the
- Watch manatees from a distance, and do not attempt to feed
manatees, or any wildlife.
- Recycle monofilament fishing line, and do not discard into the
To learn more, go to MyFWC.com/Manatee. For
information about the contest and all of the award recipients,
contact Bonnie Abellera at 850-922-4330.