Manatees surprise kayakers - FOX 13 News

Manatees surprise kayakers

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Jan Mallett was kayaking in Miller's Bayou, paddling through the canal into the Gulf.

"We saw four of five manatees and were so excited," she said.

That was just the beginning.

"It's startling, because it's not something you expect a manatee to do," Willie Christiansen said.

Before they knew it, four or five turned in to 20.

"I've never seen this many of them.  There were probably at least two dozen of them in the water and they all just went crazy at once," Mallett said.

"I think Yana was tickling them," Christiansen said.

The kayakers believe a foot pedal on the boat rubbed against a manatee beneath the boat.

"The next thing I know I'm up in the air and manatees are underneath me," Christiansen said.

They said the manatees actually lifted the kayak a couple of inches out of the water.

"It was just the craziest thing I've ever seen.  It was so exciting and the manatees were all up at one time.  They just went crazy," Mallett said.

It's not something that happens many times, and it's not something that happens in many places. 

In July, a group came up along the shoreline near the Courtney Campbell Causeway for a little frolicking in the water.  It drew such a crowd, police had to put up tape to make sure no one waded out to bother them.

These kayakers let the manatees swim away.

Gone today, but maybe back tomorrow.

"This was my second time kayaking, and I'm expecting this now all the time," Jana Jalla said.

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