Spotters count record 6,063 manatees in Florida

March 16, 2015 5:03 PM

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The annual survey is widely criticized by scientists as being largely unreliable. Scientists involved in the survey take the to the air each winter, counting the large mammals as they huddle near springs and power plants where there are pockets of warm water. One scientist told the Tampa Bay Times that process is like "counting popcorn while it pops."

But researchers involved in this year's study say the weather conditions were ideal for securing an especially accurate count.

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