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Manatee found by boat ramp off Sanibel being treated for red tide

December 9, 2016
ASHLEY GOODMAN ( , Island Reporter, Captiva Current, Sanibel-Captiva Islander

A manatee found Dec. 7 at a boat ramp near the Sanibel Causeway is being treated at the Miami Seaquarium for red tide.

The eight-foot, 650-pound manatee nicknamed Saber, was rescued by Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission. Veterinarian Dr. Maya Rodriguez at the Miami Seaquarium said he had dramatic affects from the red tide. He was unresponsive, he was experiencing seizures and he had abnormal respirations. Right now, the manatee is in more stable condition. He is breathing normal and nibbling on greens.

"The swift response of the reporting and Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission's rescue probably kept him from getting more severe in the the wild. He is responding well to medication and fluids," Rodriguez said.

Rodriguez also reported that Saber is exhibiting social behavior with another manatee that was rescued from Pine Island two days prior whose conditions were more severe.

"They are constantly touching noses," she said.

Rodriguez said that all of their samples are being saved for Florida state biologists so they can further study the effects of red tide on manatees.



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