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Temperatures drop in Central Florida, manatees seek refuge at Blue Spring State Park

A webcam screenshot showing several manatees swimming through a freshwater spring.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE—January 18, 2024
Contact: media@savethemanatee.org, 407-539-0990

ORLANDO, FL— As temperatures plummet in Central Florida this weekend, the number of manatees seeking refuge at Blue Spring State Park is expected to rise. The general public can keep an eye on the action from the comfort of their home via Save the Manatee® Club’s above- and underwater webcams, 24/7 at ManaTV.org. The stream is live during daylight hours and features highlights outside of these times. 

Blue Spring, a critical habitat for Florida manatees, offers a constant water temperature of 72º F, making it an ideal sanctuary when air temperatures drop, and surrounding waterways cool into the mid-60s or below. To preserve the manatees’ winter sanctuary, the spring run is closed to all water activities during the winter months. However, the manatee cams provide a perfect option for anyone interested in observing these gentle giants up close and personal, while ensuring the animals have the space they need to rest and keep warm, free from disturbances or harassment. 

At ManaTV.org, viewers can not only watch the live action but also read updates and observations about the Blue Spring manatees from Save the Manatee Club researchers Wayne Hartley and Cora Berchem. The website has a daily web blog which highlights the current weather conditions and daily manatee counts. You can also read about which of the over 20 Blue Spring manatees who are part of Save the Manatee Club’s popular Adopt-A-Manatee® program were spotted each day.

“The webcams have been extremely popular from the moment they launched, and, in addition to being an indispensable tool for manatee research, they also allow the general public to view manatees without disturbing them in their winter sanctuaries,” said aquatic biologist and Save the Manatee Club Executive Director Patrick Rose. “Save the Manatee Club is happy to provide this important resource in partnership with Florida State Parks and explore.org and appreciate that they play an important role in increasing awareness about imperiled manatees and the vital importance of Florida’s springs.”

Save the Manatee Club also maintains two cameras at Homosassa Springs Wildlife State Park, another vital winter refuge for manatees. All of the manatee cams are streamed in partnership with explore.org and Florida State Parks. 

Webcams are also available to news outlets for direct embedding on their websites. For more information, please contact media@savethemanatee.org.

To Adopt-A-Manatee and support the conservation efforts, visit adoptamanatee.org or call 1-800-432-JOIN (5646). 

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Save the Manatee Club, established in 1981 by the late renowned singer-songwriter, author, and entrepreneur Jimmy Buffett, along with former Florida Governor and U.S. Senator Bob Graham, is dedicated to safeguarding manatees and preserving their aquatic habitat. For more information about manatees and the Club’s efforts, visit savethemanatee.org or call 1-800-432-JOIN (5646).

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