Florida Manatees Huddle for Warmth in Shallows

A cold snap in Florida has caused some unusual behavior in the state’s manatee population, forcing many of the over-sized marine mammals into shallow waters where they huddled against each other for warmth. 

The manatees seemed to use their body temperature and shallow waters to seek refuge from the unusually cold temperatures in the Gulf of Mexico and Atlantic Ocean right now. In Crystal River in the northwest part of the state, a wildlife refuge was closed because of the manatee situation. 

A reported 300 manatees sought shelter at the Cystal River National Wildlife Refuge, according to Fox News in Florida.

Another group of manatees were filmed at Indian Harbour Beach huddling up in a similar way. 

Manatees are slow moving creatures that travel at shallow depths and often get hit by speed boats. They can weight up to half a ton and reach 13 feet in length. Manatees have been protected by the endangered species act since 1973.

Photo credit: Youtube