Florida beachgoers were treated to a spectacular show by a group of friendly manatees last Sunday.
The Huffington Post reported five or six manatees swam directly into a crowed of swimmers in what seemed like an attempt to engage them in play.
The Sun-Sentinel spoke with beachgoer Craig Hossack who said at it seemed the manatees were in a mating mode, "but a closer look suggested a mother and four or five calves competing for suckling privileges."
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Craig's wife Gina Hossack told the Sentinel, "It was not only a miracle, it was a gift. It made us feel amazing that we were able to witnesses such a thing, who gets to see something like that?"
The average Florida manatee can grow to be between 8-11 feet in length and weigh anywhere from 440–1,300 pounds, according to Animal Diversity. They can live in salt or fresh water areas, but must live in warmer weather due to an extremely low metabolic rate and lack of thick layer of body fat.
The best place to spot a Florida manatee is in Wakulla Springs in November and December, making this spotting on the Florida coast even more spectacular.
According to Animal Diversity, manatees graze nearly eight hours a day and feed on mostly plants and some small fish. They have almost no predator avoidance behavior, as they have evolved and live in places where predator animals are rarely seen.
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