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Wednesday, December 06, 2006

A photojournalist's family tests the waters

Published December 03, 2006
We picked out our wet suits and headed a few blocks away to Hunter Spring Park, where Faulkenberg would meet us with the boat. We had chosen Faulkenberg, who has operated Manatee Safaris for more than 10 years, because he specializes in small groups. The day of our trip, we had the boat to ourselves.

Crystal River is an important winter habitat for manatees and one of the few places were humans can interact with them in the wild. Fed by more than 30 warm-water springs, King's Bay maintains a constant 72 degrees Fahrenheit. So, as the water temperature in the Gulf of Mexico drops below 70 F, manatees start migrating along the coast to warm-water havens like Crystal River.

Magnolia Springs has much deeper water and was a bit cloudier than Three Sisters Springs.
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