Florida Manatee and Calf Photo
I had an opportunity of lifetime to swim with the Florida manatees in Crystal River also known as West Indian Manatees (Trichechus Manatus); one of the premiere places to see manatees during the winter months due to the spring fed 72 degrees year round temperatures as manatees need warmer waters to survive the chill winter ocean temperature. These gentle giants who also are endangered species due to boat propellers can reach 13 feet, weigh up to 3,000 pounds and feed on large submerged vegetation.
Here is a photo of a Florida manatee mother and calf, which I photograph just around 7 a.m. on one chilly morning as the air temperature was hovering around 36 degrees. The manatee calf begins to nurse within a few hours after birth by suckling from teats under the pectoral flippers, which amazingly I had the opportunity to witnessed.
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“Breakfast” – Florida Manatee and calf in Three Sisters, Crystal River, Florida.