Hundreds of manatees flocked to the spring inside the Crystal River National Wildlife Refuge Complex in Florida. They arrived at the park for the same reason they always do: to cuddle up with each other in the shallow water and soak up that warm sun.
A video, posted by the refuge on Monday, has already been viewed nearly a quarter of a million times. It shows the manatees in their cozy formation.
Thanks to the refuge's decision to close off water access to the springs, the manatees were able to relax without the swimmers and boats disturbing them.
Usually boats and scuba divers can observe the manatees from a distance at the refuge, but on Monday, the park decided that there were simply too many manatees to allow for any human visitors.
It was a wise decision. Just over four months ago, National Geographic posted a horrifying video of the tourists disturbing the manatees at the Three Sisters Springs and causing them to scatter in a panicked frenzy.
Rather than risking the safety of its guests (both human and manatee), the refuge had biologists take a video of the manatees so that the public could still enjoy them - without disturbing their habitat.