Chilly baby manatee rescued - FOX 13 News

Chilly baby manatee rescued

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ST. PETERSBURG (FOX 13) -

The cold weather is not only tough on us, but on our marine friends as well. A baby manatee was found in St. Pete's Bayboro Harbor this morning. Scientists say it was suffering from cold stress and, had it not been seen, likely would have died.

A Fish and Wildlife worker, who takes pictures of manatees to help ID them, found the calf. She was in her office when someone told here some manatees had gathered in the water nearby.

It didn't take long for her to realize something wasn't right.

"We noticed right off the bat that there was a really small calf looking like it might be by itself, so after about five minutes of watching it with no mom around, I called the rescue team at the Marine Mammal Pathobiology Laboratory," Jennifer Johnson recalled.

Scientists caught the calf and took it to Lowry Park Zoo.

It's thought to be about a year old.

Now starts the long process to nurse it back to health. It could be up to two years before the little guy is ready to be released.

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