save the manatees crystal river
save the manatees crystal river florida

"It’s humbling to see such a monumental change come from our citizens.”

Ken Frink

City Manager,
City of Crystal River


We are actively working to rehabilitate Florida’s waterways. Help us reach 93 acres restored by Crystal River’s 100th anniversary in 2023! Together, we can Save Crystal River.


After every acre is replanted, the mission does not end, but rather starts again. We must protect our waters through Responsible Anchoring and Education to ensure we preserve our waterways for future generations and a better tomorrow.


Beneath the surface, Lyngbya and organic waste choke the seagrass and underwater landscapes. Through donations and government support, we are able to give wildlife and vegetation the opportunity to prosper again. Donations to Save Crystal River go directly to rehabilitation and removing the muck. Several species of eelgrass are carefully planted with protective cages (until they are rooted and flourish) to rehabilitate the  waterways into thriving aquatic ecosystems for manatees, sea turtles and other creatures thanks to support from people like you. 

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Manatees eat 10-15% of their body weight every day. That’s 100-150 pounds of seagrass and other vegetation!

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Manatees can hold their breath for up to 20 minutes while traveling the waterways. That is a whole Netflix episode!

join in the mission

Crystal River and Florida’s waterways have been damaged by human and environmental factors making the waters uninhabitable for sea life and undesirable for recreation.

We are on a mission to make Crystal River a beautiful and thriving home for sea life, our community, and visitors.

Join us in building a more beautiful tomorrow for generations to come!

fishing at crystal river

how it all began

Dedicated residents and business professionals came together with a single goal – to rehabilitate Florida’s waterways into thriving ecosystems. Work began in Kings Bay, where Lyngbya “algae” was choking underwater vegetation and leaving cloudy, slimy water where it once was turquoise and clear. As the community banded together to clear out the muck and rehabilitate the waters, it became obvious these efforts were needed elsewhere. In 2012, that dream became a reality and Save Crystal River was born, with the mission to restore and protect the beauty and health of Florida’s waterways for future generations.

Be a part of the change for today and generations to come. Your contributions go directly to making a difference.

The Word around town

See what others are saying about the results Save Crystal River has created in our community and beyond!

“It’s amazing what Save Crystal River is achieving and the difference it makes to our community.”


“Save Crystal River provides an outstanding example of how a public-private partnership can accomplish much more than either could alone.”

Jim Farley, Former Mayor, City of Crystal River, FL

All I can say is WOW. I live on a portion of the Crystal River that has been very positively impacted by the work completed by Save Crystal River. What was once covered in Lyngbya and sludge is now covered in Rockstar eelgrass. The water has become much clearer, and many different species of fish have returned. I will say it again WOW! Keep up the good work!

    Pat Fitzpatrick

    Councilman, City of Crystal River, FL

    I’ve been fortunate enough to grow up on Crystal River and see the changes happen over the years. This project initiated by Save Crystal River is by far the single most improvement of the Nature Coast. I got to enjoy water sports and fishing as a kid, and now my family can see what I was lucky enough to enjoy. Thank You, Save Crystal River!

      Robert Holmes

      Councilman, City of Crystal River, FL

      The work that Save Crystal River is doing in cleaning up our river is wholeheartedly supported by the Chamber. Restoring our waterways is not only the right thing to do from an environmental standpoint, but for economic reasons as well.

        Josh Wooten

        CEO, Citrus County Chamber of Commerce, FL

        This process of vacuum, clean, plant, and protect is a proven success. The return of grass beds, many species of fish, and the Lyngbya-free oxygenated water that attracts them, is an environment that will yield dividends for Citrus County and its residents for decades to come.

          Jeff Kinnard

          D.C. Citrus County Commissioner, FL

          Save Crystal River has been instrumental in raising awareness on improving our water quality and keeping our community winsome for our residents and visitors. We are blessed to have them working with us.

            Ralph Massullo

            MD District 34 Representative, State of FL

            IN THE NEWS