Orphaned Manatee Rescued in Florida Keys | The Institute for Creation Research
Orphaned Manatee Rescued in Florida Keys
Necessities can be keys to forming new friendships, an orphaned baby manatee learned earlier this month.1 Maybe there is also a lesson for us humans.

“Keys” refers to the Florida Keys, the string-like archipelago of islands that trail southwardly below the south peninsula of Florida’s mainland. The Florida Keys have been physically connected since 1912—first by railway bridges, then in 1928 for automobile traffic.2

Being islanders, residents of the Keys often visit their docks. And it’s not unusual for sea creatures to visit shorelines near docks. Likewise, it’s not a big surprise for a manatee to be spotted under a boat dock. But this one needed help.

An orphaned infant manatee was rescued Saturday [May 2, 2020] after being spotted by homeowners that there was something beneath underwater rocks along their dock. The Dolphin Research Center’s (DRC) Manatee Rescue Team and volunteers with Dolphins Plus Marine Mammal Responder unit assisted the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Committee to corral the calf with netting. They then successfully scooped the manatee from the water using a large hoop net.1

Manatees are sirenians (like dugongs), marine mammals that are torpedo-shaped and massive. They are somewhat like cetaceans (whales and dolphins) and pinnipeds (seals and walruses). These are all accustomed to eating aquatic vegetation in tidal coastwaters.3

Manatees are vegetarian, eating sea plants such as water hyacinth and hydrilla, two prolific “pest plants” that clog and choke waterways. Manatees can swim quickly over short distances, propelling themselves with undulations (like a caterpillar), using flippers and tail to steer and stabilize. They are primarily nocturnal creatures.3

This baby manatee was rescued at the Key Islamorada, which is about an hour south of Miami.1,2 What happened to the baby manatee after she was rescued?

According to the DRC, the manatee may have been without its mother for several days, saying that was an unusual amount of time for the pair to be separated. They did not know why the calf separated from her mom. [The calf] was taken to Miami Seaquarium for treatment and rehabilitation.1

Stresses of all sorts are unavoidable in this mortal life, but at least in the case of the orphaned manatee infant at Islamorada, there is a fairly happy ending to the story: a successful rescue followed by an adoption-like new beginning.1

DRC described the female as less than four feet long, considered underweight at 65.5 pounds. She was diagnosed with a bacterial infection. On Sunday [May 3] afternoon, a Seaquarium veterinarian said the manatee was in “guarded condition.” After evaluation and treatment, she was placed in a pool with an older orphaned female manatee. Those caring for the small calf said she is sticking close to the older orphan’s side.1

Meanwhile, we are directed to pray for our Heavenly Father’s kingdom to come, and His will to be done, on Earth as it is in Heaven. And the time will eventually come when Christ reigns upon our planet, as time of heaven-on-earth, full of blessings for both man and beast, including no-longer-orphaned manatees.4

References
1. Staff writer. Orphaned Baby Manatee Rescued in the Keys: Calf Discovered Under Dock Now Safe with Older Orphan. Posted on Local10.com May 3, 2020, accessed May 8, 2020.
2. Staff writer. Islamorada, Village of Islands. Posted on Islamorada.fl.us, accessed May 8, 2020.
3. Whitaker Jr., J. O. 1998. National Audubon Society Field Guide to North American Mammals, revised edition. New York, NY: Alfred A. Knopf, 805-808, Plates # 366 and 367.
4. Matthew 6:9-10; Luke 11:2; Isaiah 11:1-10.

*Dr. Johnson is Associate Professor of Apologetics and Chief Academic Officer at the Institute for Creation Research.
The Latest
NEWS
Bacterial Proteins Use Quantum Mechanics
Researchers have found a dimmer switch inside a protein. It tunes the protein’s configuration to take advantage of quantum mechanics during photosynthesis....

SCIENCE IN THE NEWS
Dr. Bill Cooper, ICR’s Adjunct Professor, Now in Glory
Earlier last month on March the 9th, Dr. William R. Cooper, ICR’s Master Faculty (known to ICR-SOBA’s faculty as “Dr. Bill” since...

NEWS
Inside April 2021 Acts & Facts
How will ICR expand biblical creation education this year? How do fossilized fish and land creatures confirm Genesis history? Does recent research support...

ACTS & FACTS
Creation Kids: Bees
You’re never too young to be a creation scientist! Kids, discover fun facts about God’s creation with ICR’s special Creation Kids learning...

ACTS & FACTS
Pleasure in Our Purpose
Eric Liddell was one of the most famous athletes of the 20th century and perhaps the greatest that Scotland ever produced. An international rugby player,...

APOLOGETICS
Beware Sinkholes and Other Failing Foundations
The sudden falling of some Christian schools can be compared to tiankengs, the geological term used for sinkholes that are at least 300 feet deep.1,2...

ACTS & FACTS
The Painted Desert: Fossils in Flooded Mud Flats
Brian Thomas, Ph.D., and Tim Clarey, Ph.D. The Painted Desert stretches across 120 miles of northern Arizona. Its sedimentary rocks show bright...

ACTS & FACTS
Does Recent Research Support Human Evolution?
In 1997, the Institute for Creation Research ran an Acts & Facts article on the lack of compelling evidence regarding our supposed evolution from...

ACTS & FACTS
Building a Perfectly Optimal Flying Machine
For thousands of years, people have dreamed of flying because they witnessed birds and knew it was possible. Inspired by a study of birds, the Wright...

ACTS & FACTS
Some Marine Extinctions Were Caused by the Flood
Genesis describes a one-time global catastrophe that completely inundated the world, destroying all air-breathing land animals. God made provision through...