Today, SeaWorld’s Animal Rescue Team, Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) and Sea to Shore Alliance (Sea2Shore) donned life vests and jumped aboard SeaWorld’s rescue boat to return two rehabilitated manatees to the waterways near Merritt Island, Fla.
The two manatees, Clay weighing in at 805 pounds and Stokes a 600-pound manatee, were rescued by SeaWorld’s Animal Rescue Team this past December during harsh weather conditions causing each manatee to suffer from a condition known as cold-stressed.
· Stokes was rescued from the St. Johns River near Jacksonville, Fla. on December 5.
· Clay was rescued 300 miles from SeaWorld in Savannah, Ga. on the Savannah River December 15.
Once in SeaWorld’s care, both manatees received a full heath examination, fluids for dehydration and were provided with antibiotics to treat possible infection. With the 24-hour care these manatees received and warmer weather on the horizon, these manatees were deemed ready for return.
This year alone, SeaWorld Orlando has rescued 24 manatees and returned 22 manatees back to their natural environments.