Citrus County is located on the western coast of Florida. It is bordered by Levy, Sumter, Marion and Hernando Counties, and the Gulf of Mexico on the west. The county seat is Inverness, and the population is 141,236. In 1887, Hernando County was divided and Citrus County was created. It was named for the many citrus groves located there, although the number of groves has declined since “The Big Freeze” of 1894-1895.
The county has a total area of 773 square miles, 24.8% of which is water. There are numerous uninhabited or sparsely inhabited islands off the coast that are only accessible by boat. Some of these are privately owned, but many are state land, including those that are part of the Crystal River National Wildlife Refuge.
St Martins Aquatic Preserve and Crystal River National Wildlife Refuge are home to a variety of flora and fauna. The US Fish and Wildlife Service reports that over 400 manatees make their winter home in Citrus County. Manatees can also be viewed in the underwater observatory at Homosassa Springs Wildlife State Park which has an underwater observatory for public viewing of manatees. Many of these animals are recovering from injuries and will be released back into the wild.
Citrus County has employment opportunities for those in the fields of marine biology and forestry, and also various opportunities for those in health care. Citrus County offers many water-related activities in the coastal areas as well as the inland fresh water. Between its natural attractions, and job opportunities, Citrus County has a lot to offer.