SeaWorld Orlando announced today that they have successfully rehabilitated and released a mother manatee and her dependent calf to the waters near Tomoka State Park in Volusia County.
The manatee mother and her calf were rescued by the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) and quickly transported to SeaWorld Orlando on May 9, 2016 after it was discovered that the mother was suffering from a pneumothorax (air trapped inside body cavity) which caused severe buoyancy issues, which could negatively impact her health, eating patterns and the nursing of her calf.
SeaWorld’s expert veterinary team outfitted her with a “manatee wetsuit” the park designed for such rescue cases. The wetsuit helps assist the manatee with floating and allows the team draw out trapped air and fluids. She was successfully cared for and is now at a healthy weight of 1270 pounds.
The mother’s young calf came in weighing approximately 97 pounds, measuring 4 feet and 5 inches, and still nursing from its mother. The calf never left its mothers side during the rehabilitation process at the park.