Florida is a paradise for nature lovers, and manatees are one of the most beloved animals that call this state home. These gentle giants are fascinating to observe in their natural habitat, and June is an excellent time to see them up close.
Florida’s clear springs, diverse wildlife, and crystal-clear waters offer nature lovers a rare opportunity to get up close with manatees. The gentle giants are also called sea cows and they’re known for their friendly demeanor. You might wonder if you can swim with manatees in Florida during June.
In this article, we’ll show you where to find manatees in Florida in June so you can have a once-in-a-lifetime experience with these amazing creatures.
Discover the Surprising Habits of These Gentle Giants
Manatees are marine mammals that can be found along the coasts and rivers of Florida year-round.
They’re known for their slow movements and friendly personalities, making them a favorite among visitors to the state.
Here are a few tips on how to spot manatees during June in Florida.
Manatees, also known as sea cows, are among Florida’s iconic wildlife. The gentle giants are also called sea cows and can reach 3,500 pounds.
They graze aquatic plants in shallow water. The manatees migrate in winter to warmer water because they are very sensitive to the cold.
They can easily be spotted during this period in rivers, springs, and discharge basins of power plants that maintain a temperature of around 72degF.
What about summer, when water temperatures rise and manatees spread out across Florida’s waters? Can you still see manatees in June? Yes, you can see them in June.
However, you will need to plan and do research before your trip.
Can You Swim With The Manatees In June In Florida?
Understand Manatees. Before diving into how to swim with these marine mammals, take some time to learn about their fascinating nature.
The manatee is an herbivorous creature that lives in Florida’s rivers and coastal waters. The manatee is known for its large size, round body, and paddle-like flippers. Manatees are known for their friendly, curious nature.
Manatee Swimming in June. June is the season for manatees. Manatees are known to migrate from cooler ocean temperatures into the warmer springs.
Despite some specific rules and guidelines, there are many places that offer tours or experiences where you can swim with these majestic creatures.
Choose the right location: If you want to have a memorable and safe experience, choose a tour operator that is reputable.
Crystal River is the Ultimate Manatee Swimming Experience
Crystal River is located in Florida on the Gulf Coast and has been widely recognized for being one of the best places to go swimming with manatees during June.
Crystal River National Wildlife Refuge is a protected sanctuary with knowledgeable guides that provides an excellent environment to observe and interact with manatees.
It is important to be mindful of the well-being of manatees when swimming with them.
These are guidelines for manatee encounters that respect gentle creatures.
- Respectful distance: Maintaining a distance of at least 10 meters from the manatee will help to prevent stress and harm.
- Do not disturb or touch the manatees. They are protected under the law.
- Choose biodegradable sunblock when swimming with manatees to reduce chemical pollution.
- You should follow the directions of your guide.
Discover the Best Spots to Witness Gentle Giants in Action”
1. Three Sisters Springs Crystal River
Three Sisters Springs in Florida is one of Florida’s most popular manatee spots. The Crystal River National Wildlife Refuge protects manatees in the Gulf Coast’s largest wintering refuge.
In the winter, manatees gather in the clear, crystal-clear waters. They can be reached by kayak, canoe, or boat.
On a guided manatee tour, you can swim with them or snorkel. You must follow strict guidelines to not disturb the animals.
In June however, the majority of manatees will leave the springs to head for the Gulf of Mexico where there is more space and food. In the winter, you may see some manatees at the springs and in Kings Bay.
However, they will not be as plentiful or predictable.
You can increase your chance of seeing manatees by booking a tour through a reliable operator who knows the best places to look.
The Three Sisters Springs Center offers both a boardwalk service and trolleys to see the springs. You can learn about the conservation of manatees.
2. Blue Spring State Park in Orange City
Blue Spring State Park, is another favorite destination of manatee enthusiasts. This park is more than 2,600 acres and has a spring flowing into the St. Johns River.
The manatees flock to the spring during winter. The half-mile-long boardwalk along the spring run allows visitors to walk and observe the manatees. There are also educational programs and camping areas.
The spring run in June is only open to manatees. In the spring, you may see manatees but not in as large numbers or as clearly as they were in winter.
Rent a canoe or kayak and paddle the river yourself, looking out for signs of manatees.
You can also join a paddle tour or river cruise that takes you to the most beautiful spots where you will see wildlife and manatees.
3. Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge in Titusville
Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge, a habitat of 140,000 acres that links the Mosquito Lagoon and Indian River.
The refuge is home to many wildlife species including manatees, alligators, and bald eagles. Manatees are seen at the refuge all year round, though they tend to congregate near the Haulover Canal, on its northern end.
Canal was built in the late 19th century for manatees and boats to have easier access from the lagoon to the river.
You can check out the manatees below at Haulover Canal’s Manatee Observation deck in June. They may be resting on the canal surface, or even swimming through it.
Bring your kayak or canoe to paddle around the nearby islands or along the canal, while following distance and etiquette rules.
You can also join a boat tour, or eco-tour to get to the most beautiful places in the refuge to view manatees.
Exclusive Access: How to Get Up Close with Manatees this Summer!
These are the best places to observe manatees on Florida beaches in June. They aren’t the only places to see manatees in Florida.
You may be able to find more opportunities for you to view these incredible animals in their habitat depending on your location and the distance you’re willing to go.
Other places you might want to visit include:
- Homosassa Springs Wildlife State Park – This park has an underwater viewing enclosure that lets visitors see wild and resident manatees in the area near Homosassa Springs.
- Hunter Springs Park – This park provides a public kayak launch and beach that allows access to Crystal River, and the manatees there.
- Manatee Spring Manatee Spring State Park Park – This park has a spring of the first magnitude that is able to attract manatees in the cooler months. It also offers opportunities for snorkeling.
- Mary McLeod Bethune Beach Park – This park has a boardwalk with an observation deck overlooking a manatee gathering area near New Smyrna Beach.
- TECO Manatee Center – The center features an educational center and an observation deck that allows you to see manatees being attracted by the warm water released from an electric plant in Tampa.
- Three Sisters Springs – This park has three springs that attract hundreds of manatees in winter and offer swimming and snorkeling.
Manatees are active in Florida from June to August
If you are aware of where to go and what to do, seeing manatees is a great experience in Florida during June.
These tips will help you get the most out of your trip:
- Check online or contact local operators to get the latest information about where you can see manatees.
- Manatee sightings cannot be guaranteed as they depend on many variables, including weather, water temperatures, human activity, and food.
- Respect the manatees. Federal and state laws prohibit harassment or disturbance of them. Follow any instructions or rules provided by tour operators or authorities. Keep your distance at least 50 feet away, and avoid feeding or touching them.
- Manatees move slowly and spend the majority of their time underwater resting, feeding, or sleeping. It may be necessary to wait until they surface or come closer.
- Prepare yourself: Binoculars, zoom lenses or insect repellent will help you avoid sunburns. Water and energy snacks are also good to keep hydrated.
In June, swimming with manatees is an experience you will never forget. You can connect with this magnificent creature in its natural habitat.
You can help protect these gentle giants by choosing responsible tour operators and following the guidelines. If you are planning to visit Florida in June don’t pass up the chance to create lasting memories by swimming with manatees.
Swimming with manatees can be a great experience. By treating them with care and respect, we will ensure that they remain in Florida’s waters and are conserved.
However, you can find them in Florida’s waters during summer if you look for them and know how to act around them!