In sky patrol, the manatees are counted and mapped from the sky. Each manatee's exact location is recorded. The sky patrol team assess the availability of suitable habitats for manatees outside of the Alligator Hole River, in order to classify areas deemed unsuitable for manatees, as 'red'. Areas are classified as 'red' based on the presence of dangerous activities such as poaching, water sports activities and the presence of coastal industries, which give off poisonous fumes and leak harmful substancse into the sea. Lack of sufficient food and fresh water are also facctors which are used to classify areas as 'red'.
Areas which have been declared 'red' are:
Sky patrol uses a Cessna 172 aircraft, to fly over Jamaican waters (The Caribbean Sea) on relatively clear days, to search for manatees. The areas which are thought to be prime for manatees are circled repeatedly. Manatees are seen when they come to the surface of the sea to breathe. Manatees are identified by the waves which are produced by their large tail flukes, when they dive. Sighting is confirmed when at least two persons agree that a manatee was seen. It is easy to spot herds of manatees from the sky, since they are usually quite active.