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Monday, April 15, 2024

Manatee camera program launches at Silver Springs State Park

A brand-new set of underwater and above-water webcams have arrived at Silver Springs State Park to livestream manatees and other wildlife in the area.

Launched by the Save the Manatee Club, these new cameras will add to the existing cameras at Blue Spring State Park (Orange City, Florida) and Ellie Schiller Homosassa Springs Wildlife State Park (Homosassa, Florida), which are viewed by millions of people worldwide.

Manatee camera program launches in Ocala photo of manatee underwater (photo by Save the Manatee Club)
New webcams, both above and below the water, have been set up at Silver Springs State Park to capture manatees and other wildlife at the park. (Photo: Save the Manatee Club)

According to Save the Manatee Club, the cameras at Silver Springs State Park (5656 E Silver Springs Boulevard in Silver Springs) are a collaboration between the club, Explore.org, and the Florida Department of Environmental Protection.

Manatee camera program launches in Ocala photo of manatee underwater (photo by Save the Manatee Club) 2
A manatee swimming in front of an underwater camera at Silver Springs State Park. (Photo: Save the Manatee Club)

The above-water stationary camera will show manatees and other wildlife from above water, while the underwater camera will provide viewers with a 180-degree viewing experience. In addition, viewers can move the cameras around to spot various fish and manatees in the area.

The Silver River, which originates at Silver Springs, provides important habitat for manatees and many other species of wildlife. In recent years, more manatees have begun utilizing the Silver and Ocklawaha rivers.

“The webcams provide a wonderful entertainment and educational tool to the general public, but they also help us with the manatee research,” said Patrick Rose, Executive Director of Save the Manatee Club.

“We have learned so much through observing manatees on our existing webcams, and the new cameras at (Silver Springs State Park) can add to the existing manatee photo-ID research conducted in this area, as well as highlighting Silver Springs and the Silver River as an important natural habitat for manatees,” added Rose.

The webcams are streaming live during the daytime, with highlights playing at night. To view these cameras, check out Explore online, or visit Save the Manatee Club’s YouTube page or website.