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Questions about Crystal River, Florida

Crystal River Florida Manatees

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#21 katy-kid



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Posted 09 January 2015 - 07:37 AM

Unfortunatley as a FL native, this is a very disturbing trend I am seeing more and more statewide in regards to all marine related, tourist/monetary driven activites. The keys are a perfect example of this, and it has nothing to do with the tour ops the majority of the time, there are just too many people in a sensitive environment with no interest in conservation as this is not their home. It's extremely frustrating, and I've run out of patience. Trying to explain to someone forcibly chasing a sea turtle with their go-pro that what their doing is not ok when their on vacation is literally like talking to a wall. Any FL divers, (or anyone in general), with any suggestions on this matter are greatly welcome!

Katy Danca Galli

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#22 Alison Perkins

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Posted 11 January 2015 - 02:33 PM

That's really too bad that you didn't have an awesome experience. I did the manatee trip with Gregory Sweeney in 2014 (http://www.gregorysw...rip_manatee.php) and thought it was fantastic. His trips are all about the photography and as such he keeps his group numbers small, and his itinerary flexible.


I did the trip in a drysuit and I was very happy that I did. We were lucky* that a very cold spell hit.


* Not so lucky for the manatees but the really cold weather was fortuitous in many ways: it drives the manatees into the warmer waters of the springs in large numbers, and the conditions are less hospitable for human visitors so most people don't find they can comfortably stay in the water long (which is good if you're in a drysuit and happy to hang out for people-free vistas).

Underwater photographer based in New Zealand.


#23 jahjahwarrior


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Posted 11 January 2015 - 06:34 PM

I really liked birds. I last went during off season and they spent about 8 hours in the water with only 4 people on the boat, while we watched other operators make two trips! I really loved their customer service.

Flashes weren't a problem then but again, small group in off season and I was the only one with a camera.

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#24 diverdoug1


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Posted 12 January 2015 - 08:35 AM

I think there may be some confusion between the rules stated by the cattle boat with regard to submerging, and Florida law.  Scuba diving is allowed in the areas not in the sanctuary zone, so submerging is obviously allowed.  I find the best photo opportunites are provided if you rent your own boat.  You can rent a pontoon boat for up to 8 people for $25 per hour at the Crystal Lodge Dive Center (352) 795-6798.  Just follow the appplicable laws regarding manatee interaction.  It is a much nicer and relaxiing experience than trying to go on  a cattle boat.

Edited by diverdoug1, 12 January 2015 - 05:50 PM.

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