It's that time again, when central Florida's major news channels do their inaugural Manatee Awareness Month story. The news anchor starts by talking about the sea's most gentle animal and how the momma manatees are so cute with their calves, they visit a wildlife conservationist that gives tips on how to protect them and suggested places for visiting manatees.
The science behind manatees' annual trek to the warm springs of central Florida is a habit of survival. Manatees (like us!) are mammals and are at risk of hypothermia when their bodies get too cold.
They spend most of their lives in sea water, but as the ocean gets cold in the winter time manatees make their way to natural springs, which are known to keep a steady temperature of 72 degrees.
The key to their survival is to not delay their trip to the springs, because the slightest drops in temperature could be morbid for the sweet creatures. So before sea water temperatures get too low, manatees travel in big communities to the springs to spend their winters. While in the springs, they huddle in groups to stay warm and then travel back to the ocean in the spring.
How could routine, communal living and a bit of hibernation save your life?