Florida. United States of America. Crystal River. Manatees

Manatees are herbivores that are also called “sea cows”. There are four different species in the world. The specie we know particularly is “Trichechus manatus latirostis”. This is the Caribbean manatee. It is the largest species. Every year from November to April, the colony of Florida manatees congregate in the warm waters of Crystal River where temperatures are milder.

Although manatees are protected animals in the region, they face many risks. The main danger comes from boat propellers. Manatees have to surface to breathe because they are mammals. That's when they are most at risk. The scars caused by the propellers are often very deep and very impressive. Sometimes the wounds are fatal. The second danger comes from lower temperatures. Even if they are grouped in areas with hot springs, the water temperature can drop below 15 degrees Celsius (50 farenheit degrees) during the harsh winters. Then manatees may risk pneumonia which can be fatal. The third risk relates to water pollution. The man is everywhere and pollution is increasing from year to year. Manatees are on the frontline. They often catch diseases against which they are not immune.

The life of the manatees often exceeds 40 years. Despite all the risks they face, most people manage to run a happy old age. Manatees are marine animals very easy to photograph because they swim at shallow depths. The best time of the day to enjoy the beautiful lights is in the morning to catch the rays of light.

Click on a thumbnail to enlarge the image.

 

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