Springs Eternal: Florida's Fountain of Youth

Divers find unseen world harboring strange ecology in NATURE’s Springs Eternal: Florida’s Fountain of Youth.

According to legend, Spanish explorers believed that a fountain of eternal youth bubbled up to the surface somewhere in the place we know today as Florida. In a poetic way, they were right.

Beneath Florida lie hundreds of miles of underwater channels and caves that comprise the world’s largest known system of springs. Largely unchanged since the age of dinosaurs, these springs shelter strange life forms, support improbable ecologies, and dot the land above it with outlets of water that once — before the expansion of Florida’s human population — was as pure as any found on this planet.

With its abundance of alligators, sunfish, eagles, great blue herons, and of course, the gentle and endangered manatee — to name only a few of the state’s better-know fascinating creatures — Florida is a wondrous ecological laboratory, even on its surface. Below the surface, however, is where the real surprises lie.

Follow divers into dangerous and unchartered channels never before seen in NATURE’s Springs Eternal: Florida’s Fountain of Youth.

To order a copy of Springs Eternal: Florida’s Fountain of Youth, please visit the NATURE Shop.

Online content for Springs Eternal: Florida’s Fountain of Youth was originally posted May 2000.

  • branecia

    nice job!!!

  • Amber

    This is very interesting, even though i still am not sure it is even true??

  • annemarie johansen

    this is interesting and cool

  • Stewart Thomas

    It is very true, indeed. Florida’s underwater system of caves and channels is a little known frontier being explored by divers, dye traces, gps, and other exploration devices. Visit http://www.TheBluePath.org to learn more about how Florida residents are interacting with our water resources, and fighting to preserve the planet’s largest constellation of springs.

  • why you wanna know

    ayemann yall need to just but that stuff like it is mann this junk aint cool bruh

Produced by THIRTEEN    ©2014 THIRTEEN Productions LLC. All rights reserved.

PBS is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization.