Manatees are very passive and loving creatures. Crystal River and Homosassa have a year round population of Florida Manatees. Crystal River and Homosassa Springs are known as the homes of the largest herds of wintering Manatees that enjoy the protection of the Crystal River National Wildlife Refuge. There is a resident herd year round but as the Manatees seek warmer water between October and March, the opportunity for Manatee viewing and “close up” scuba or snorkel encounters increases during these months.
Manatee Encounter Guidelines
• Practice manatee-friendly behavior: • Be a passive observer. • Avoid excessive noise and splashing. • Use snorkel gear. • Never chase, poke or surround manatees. • Never separate a calf from its mother. • Never separate an individual manatee from its group. • Never feed manatees or give them water. • Take only as many photos for which the manatees will pose. • Do not stir up river bottom sediments