Citrus County, Florida -- Three Sisters Springs had to close down on Monday when over 300 manatees rapidly moved into the interior of the springs at an unexpected rate.
As tides began to rise around noon, the manatees started to swim into the springs. During a manatee count conducted today by the manatee watch volunteers, a total of 293 manatees had moved into the interior of the springs by 1:00 p.m. By 1:30 p.m. the manatee count in the interior of the springs had surpassed 300 total manatees and The US Fish and Wildlife issued the temporary closure of Three Sisters Springs.
Although a cold front is expected to arrive for some areas on Monday night, the USFWS will make further determinations by Tuesday morning at sunrise - since tides are expected to drop during morning hours to an extreme low by 10:44 a.m. If manatee activity is high during the low tides on Tuesday morning, the springs will remain closed.