Manatee Manatee
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Blue Spring Run Cookie Map
An Edible Lesson in Geography

Background: Key Geographic Features for your Map
Blue Spring Run
Cookie Map
(Click on cookie to enlarge. But you'll have to make your own to get a taste)

Where do some manatees migrate to in the cold of winter? To the Blue Spring "Run", a hot spring with a constant temperature of about 72 degrees F (22.2 degrees C).

Study the features of the Blue Spring Run, then make a cookie map of the place where the manatees love to lounge. For the general shape of your map, you can study the General Diagram of the Run. For a more detailed view, look at the Blank Attendance Form of Ranger Wayne's Attendance Sheets.

General Diagram of the "Run"

Blank Attendance Form
Click image for a Detailed View of the Run

Key Blue Spring Features for your map:

  • St. John's River
  • Ranger Wayne in canoe
  • HB = Barrier at River
  • CB = Barrier at Canoe Basin
  • BO = Observation Deck
  • HO = Observation Deck
  • SA = Swimming Area
  • Boil= Start of the Run
  • Temperature of the Boil (both Degrees C and F)
  • Transects (Imaginary "field markers as location reference points)

Activity: Making the Cookie Map

What you will need:
  1. Prepared sugar cookie dough
  2. Rolling pins
  3. Large cookie sheet
  4. Gummie "fish" or "Good & Plenty" candy to represent manatees
  5. String licorice to represent the transects
  6. Cookie Sprinkles and Nerds, or sprinkles and mini-marshmallows to show boat barriers
  7. Blue frosting for the Run and brown frosting for the St. John's River
  8. Small edible treats to represent fish like "Goldfish" crackers
  9. Flat breakfast cereal (i.e Life cereal or mini Shredded Wheat) to depict observation decks
  10. Red hots or frosting for the boil
  11. Or think of your own candies or other food items to represent any of the above!
  12. Toothpicks and paper labels


  1. Working in groups, design your Blue Spring Run map on a piece of paper using the AttendanceSheet and General Diagram of the Blue Spring Run as your guide for design. Include the St. John's River, and other Blue Spring features.
  2. Roll out and form cookie dough on a large cookie sheet in the shape of Blue Spring Run as it meets the St. John's River.
  3. When the big cookie looks like your map of the Run, send it to the oven to bake.
  4. When you've finished baking the cookie, let it cool.
  5. Use blue frosting for the Run; brown frosting for the St.John's River
  6. We used mini-marshmallows from a hot chocolate mix and sprinkles to designate the boat barriers.
  7. Add the string licorice to show the transects
  8. Use treats like Gummie "fish" or Good N Plenty pieces to show manatees
  9. Indicate the temperature of the Run in degrees F and C.
  10. Place treats to show other landmarks or features (i.e.observation decks, swimming area, etc.)
  11. Label each important landmark or feature (swimming area, boat barrier, the Boil etc...)
  12. Place treats like gummie fish in the Run
  13. SEND US A PICTURE OF YOUR MAP before you eat it!

Try This! Journaling Questions

  • What purpose do you think the map transects serve for Ranger Wayne's research on Blue Spring manatees? What problems would he have without use of transect lines?

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