Happy 'Manatee Appreciation Day.'

Today is Manatee Appreciation Day. This video is a live stream from Blue Spring State Park in Florida. Manatees flock to the natural spring water of this protected area when the ocean water gets too chilly. I was lucky enough to be there during the winter months and got to see over 100 of these lovely marine mammals floating peacefully in the warm water.

There are three manatee species worldwide – West Indian, West African, and Amazonian. All three are listed as vulnerable to extinction. Loss of habitat and collisions with oceans and ships are the main problems for the manatee. In Blue Springs we saw many animals with scars from run ins with boats.

If you'd like to learn more or help preserve these beautiful animals check out https://defenders.org/florida-manatee/how-you-can-help