We participated in a behind the scenes tour of the rescue area at SeaWorld last weekend. Although it was great to see the extremely large “sling” they use to transport whales, and see the tanks where the turtles spend time during rehabilitation, by far the highlight was seeing a one week old manatee calf! They rescued the mother who was tangled in fishing nets or lines and she was pregnant, so now they have a baby. So cute!
SeaWorld plans to release them both into the wild when the mother is well enough to be on her own again; part of her flipper had to be amputated due to the injury. Aquariums and places like SeaWorld are not allowed to breed manatees (or Sea Turtles) due to the fact that they are “endangered” species, so this event is certainly rare.