WMFE is Central Florida's primary provider of NPR programming on 90.7 FM and Classical Music on 90.7 HD2. Part of the community since 1965, WMFE focuses on providing quality national and local news and programming. We inspire and empower all Central Floridians to discover, grow and engage within and beyond their world.
Support for 90.7 WMFE is provided by

Manatees Seek Refuge From Cold At Three Sisters Springs

Photo courtesy Wikimedia Commons.

Stay up to date on coronavirus coverage: Listen to WMFE on your radio, the WMFE mobile app or your smart speaker — say “Alexa, play NPR” or “WMFE” and you’ll be connected.

Cold weather is forcing more than 500 manatees to huddle for warmth at Three Sisters Springs, part of the Crystal River National Wildlife Refuge.

It is the first time so many manatees have spent so many days at the only refuge for the endangered Florida manatee.

For more than two weeks the manatees have huddled at the springs 80 miles west of Orlando, prompting administrators to intermittently close the area to swimmers.

Ivan Vicente of the Crystal River National Wildlife Refuge says the sea cows are squeezed into an area measuring less than an acre.

“We’re talking 500 of them, all body-to-body, next to each other looking like giant boulders in a big boulder field underwater, is what it looks like.”

Manatees cannot survive in cold water, and that is why during the winter they seek out warmer water near springs and power plants.

The area is one of the few places where people can swim with manatees during the winter.

 


Get The 90.7 WMFE Newsletter

Your trusted news source for the latest Central Florida COVID-19 news, updates on special programs and more. Support our extended coverage.

GET THE LATEST

WMFE Journalistic Ethics Code | Public Media Code of Integrity

Amy Green

About Amy Green

Reporter and Producer

Amy Green covers the environment for 90.7 News. She is an award-winning journalist whose work has been heard on NPR and seen in PEOPLE, Newsweek, The New York Times and The Christian Science Monitor. She began her career at The Associated Press. Her book on the Everglades, under contract with Johns Hopkins ... Read Full Bio »

TOP