After 17 years, the manatee license plate has received a face-lift.
Florida's Beloved Marine Mammal Gets a Face-lift
The manatee license plate
was created to raise funds for manatee research and protection.
Originally sponsored by the Save the Manatee Club, responsibility
for the plate was shifted to the Florida Fish and Wildlife
Conservation Commission (FWC) and the plate was enacted on March 6,
1990. To date, over 559,000 manatee license plates have been issued
and nearly $34,000,000 has been collected.
Revenue from sales of the manatee license plate are deposited
into the Save the Manatee Trust Fund, which is managed by the FWC.
The trust fund is the primary funding source for the State's
manatee-related research and conservation management
Once the most popular specialty license plate, the manatee
license plate is currently the sixth most popular. In addition to a
decrease in sales, revenues into the Save the Manatee Trust Fund
are not keeping pace with inflation. With the declining revenue and
popularity of the license plate and the fact that the manatee
license plate has not been redesigned since its creation in 1990,
the FWC worked with Florida artist Nancy Blauers to redesign the
license plate. After several years of hard work, the redesign of
the manatee license plate is finally complete and the new plates
are now available at Florida county tax collector's offices.
About the artist
A native of the Connecticut shore, Nancy Blauers has a long-time
love for the maritime coast. She grew up sailing on Long Island
Sound, with the wind, the waves, and her fascination for wildlife
serving as inspiration for her art. Her parents were greatly
supportive of her artistic skills, which were discovered at a young
age, and she was formally trained at the Frank Covino Academy of
Art in Fairfield, Connecticut, and the prestigious School of Visual
Arts in New York City, earning her BFA in Illustration in 1986.
As she developed her skills, she saw a need to add her voice and
talents to the conservation efforts of our world. "In creating my
art, if I can inspire one person to see creatures-that they would
normally never encounter in their day-to-day life-with awe and
amazement, I can hopefully influence them to help make a positive
difference in our natural world."
Nancy is skilled in many different mediums; she works most often
in sculpting wood and resins. She also has a very strong background
in painting people and animal portraits in oils. Her work has been
displayed at numerous wildlife shows and galleries including The
Leigh Yawkey Woodson Art Museum of Wausau, Wisconsin, and with The
Society of Animal Artists.
Currently the Senior Artist with Margaritaville Merchandising,
Nancy greatly enjoys creating designs depicting "the Margaritaville
lifestyle" for products such as dimensional sculptures, camp
shirts, and tee shirts for the Margaritaville stores.
Nancy and her husband Greg live on their small farm in Geneva,
Florida, where they enjoy their horses, and can be found on the
weekend scuba diving along the southeast Florida coast. She is
currently developing a series of large oil paintings of reef fishes
and corals inspired by her amazement of the undersea world, and
just completed a portrait of manatees. For more information on
Nancy's work, contact her at BlauersArt@hotmail.com.