Rescued Manatee Gives Birth

SeaWorld rescuing manatee

SeaWorld’s Animal Rescue team traveled to Sykes Creek in Merritt Island, Fla., on June 8 to rescue the 10-foot manatee that had severe injuries to the front right flipper caused by a crab pot line.

Back in June, the animal rescue team at SeaWorld Orlando came to the aid of a 10-foot manatee who was injured and caught in a fishing line in Sykes Creek in Merritt Island, Florida. The 1,380-pound manatee was transported to SeaWorld so that veterinarians could treat her injuries.  Her right flipper was severely injured and had to be amputated.

On July 18, the manatee gave birth to a healthy calf.  The baby has been nursing and bonding with its mother in SeaWorld Orlando’s back area pool. The animal team will continue to monitor the pair.

Rescued manatee and calf

Approximately six weeks after her rescue, rescued manatee gives birth to a calf at SeaWorld Orlando on the morning of July 18, 2012.

Rescued manatee and calf

The mother and baby will be monitored by SeaWorld’s animal team while they bond in the back area pool.

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Call to Florida High School Artists: Manatee Decal Art Competition

2008 Manatee Decal

The 2008 decal artwork was created by Austin Bynon, a student from West Boca Raton Community High School.

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission is inviting all Florida students in grades 9-12 to submit artwork for the 2011-2012 manatee decals. The decals will be available to Florida residents when they donate 5 or more dollars to the Save the Manatee Trust Fund. The funds raised will go towards manatee rescue and rehabilitation, research, and public awareness.

Florida schools may submit up to 5 pieces of original student artwork by January 28. For the complete rules and more information about the contest, see:

The Florida manatee, a subspecies of the West Indian manatee, is an herbivorous mammal that inhabits the shallow coastal waters, rivers, and springs of Florida and neighboring states. It is considered endangered. November is Manatee Awareness Month in Florida.

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SeaWorld Cares for Orphaned Baby Manatee

SeaWorld rehabilitation experts have been working around the clock tending to a baby manatee orphan.  Every three hours, the 3.5-foot, 41-pound marine mammal is bottle-fed with a nutrient-rich formula. Every other day, the animal care specialists weigh the manatee and monitor her progress. Although her condition remains guarded, park veterinarians hope to eventually release her back into the wild.

The manatee, just weeks old, was rescued from the waters of Daytona Beach, Florida and transported to SeaWorld by the Florida Wildlife Conservation Commission.

In the wild, all three species of manatee are considered threatened by the IUCN Redlist. The Florida manatee subspecies is considered endangered.  Threats include habitat destruction, red tide, and boating accidents.

Baby manatee orphan at SeaWorld

SeaWorld animal care specialist Jeff Braso bottle-feeds a baby manatee, Tuesday, July 27, at SeaWorld’s Rescue & Rehabilitation Center in Orlando, Fla. The park’s animal staff has been providing 24-hour care for the animal since she was orphaned by her mother in Daytona Beach, Fla. on July 24, 2010. (Photo by SeaWorld Orlando)

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Manatees Looking for Warmth

The current cold weather in Florida has been forcing manatees to seek warmth any way possible. As a result, over 100 manatees have found their way into Satellite Beach Canal in Brevard County.

The problem posed by this is that the manatees have eaten all of the grass that lined canal. Now the manatees must either risk heading back into the frigid ocean waters to search for food or face starvation in the canal.

The chilly water puts the manatees at risk for cold stress, which can be deadly. The state has worked out a an emergency triage system if the manatees begin to get sick.

The manatees have also drawn large crowds of onlookers eager to get a glimpse at the endangered creatures.

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