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A morning of manatee zen

A young manatee rolls on its back as it enjoys the morning at Manatee Park in Lee County.
Andrea Melendez
/
WGCU
A young manatee rolls on its back as it enjoys the morning at Manatee Park in Lee County.

The manatees at Manatee Park in Lee County were very active in the warmer waters of the park Tuesday morning. They find shelter during cooler days in the park’s canal fed by the warm water outflow from the Florida Power & Light plant across Palm Beach Boulevard.

Numerous manatees can be found at the park during SWFL’s colder months, December and January, and Tuesday there were around 10.

These slow-moving sea cows are foragers that eat a plant-based diet -- up to 150 pounds of food per day. Manatees can hold their breath for almost 20 minutes and can live to be 40 years old. The presence of manatees is a reflection of the overall health of the vegetation in an area. If they can eat and it’s warm, they will come.

Manatees flock to Manatee Park during cooler weather