Explore.org: Homosassa Springs Above Water Manatees (Ellie Schiller Homosassa Springs Wildlife State Park)

Discover what’s been called “the most beautiful river and springs in the world” and a sanctuary for manatees and an astounding number of fresh and saltwater fish.

Homosassa headspring, where this camera is positioned above water, is unique in that the main vents flows from three points underground with each vent having different salt content and water quality. The three sources blend together in the basin before exiting down the spring run and into the Homosassa River. Due to this, the Homosassa Springs are filled with a variety of saltwater and freshwater fish species and perhaps known best as a warm-water haven for wintering Florida manatees, a subspecies of the West Indian manatee.

Ellie Schiller Homosassa Springs Wildlife State Park provides a sanctuary and home to manatees that cannot be released into the wild. The park also serves as a rehabilitation facility for manatees with injuries or illness. In the winter, wild manatees use the springs as a warm-water sanctuary. The park’s natural freshwater spring bowl remains a constant 72-degree temperature year-round. Several captive manatees, who cannot be released into the wild, are in Save the Manatee Club’s Adopt-A-Manatee ® program. To learn more, visit savethemanatee.org/adopt.

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