Have you ever seen a manatee? I bet you’ve heard of them: big, seal-like mammals that live in warm southern waters and, some people think, were the creatures that gave rise to ancient sea lore about mermaids–though after seeing a manatee close up, you have to figure those sailors were pretty desperate to confuse them with women!
We’ve wintered on the Gulf Coast for several years but never were fortunate enough to see these gentle giants in the wild until now. The weather was a little cool so they’d gathered where the water was warmer. We counted at least 30!
Manatees are not only gentle, they’re slow moving. Sadly, they’re often injured by boats. If you’re boating in waters that are home to manatees, please keep to a slow, careful speed.