Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

A manatee milestone: Snooty turning 60

Snooty, the mascot of Manatee County, will soon mark his sixth decade. He will celebrate a little early with a party Saturday at his home at the South Florida Museum in Bradenton.

Times (2001)

Snooty, the mascot of Manatee County, will soon mark his sixth decade. He will celebrate a little early with a party Saturday at his home at the South Florida Museum in Bradenton.

He remembers things he was taught when he was a year old. He eats healthy food and gets lots of exercise. No wonder Snooty has lived longer than any other captive manatee in the world. On Monday, the mascot of Manatee County turns 60, showing the resilience of one of Florida's natural icons. He was born aboard one boat — the Prins Valdemar, which had been converted into the Miami Aquarium — after another one had injured his mother. Alice Walters Wallace, now 85, the daughter of the owner of the Prins Valdemar, remembers rubbing ointment on the mother manatee's propeller wounds and swimming with the affectionate calf. Snooty's keeper trained him to do simple tricks that he still performs. Today, Snooty gets a party at the South Florida Museum — no cake, just strawberries and pineapples. A fellow his age has to watch what he eats.

July 21, 1948

Snooty born at the Miami Aquarium to Lady, an injured manatee. Operator Sam Stout trains both Lady and her calf to do tricks. Harry Truman in the White House.

April 1, 1949

In trouble for having two manatees instead of the one on his permit, Stout donates Snooty to Manatee County. Calf housed in a 3,000-gallon tank at the South Florida Museum in Bradenton.

1950

Miami Aquarium closed. Lady disappears into Biscayne Bay. Pioneering manatee biologist Joe Moore visits Snooty in Bradenton, cites performance of tricks to show how intelligent manatees are.

1965

First American combat troops land in Vietnam. Construction begins on a new South Florida Museum, including 7,000-gallon tank for Snooty.

1967-68

First in-depth study of manatees conducted by Daniel "Woodie" Hartman and James ""Buddy'' Powell in Crystal River. Powell's parents took him to visit Snooty when he was 8.

1972

ABC airs Jacques Yves-Cousteau's Forgotten Mermaids documentary, made with Hartman's help, creating international interest in Florida manatees.

1973

President Nixon signs the Endangered Species Act. Manatees on original endangered list.

1978

Snooty turns 30. Legislature declares entire state a manatee sanctuary.

1981

Jimmy Buffett meets Gov. Bob Graham and they create Save the Manatee Club, set up in part by Patrick Rose, who visited Snooty on college break in the late '60s.

1991

Save the Manatee Club petitions to move Snooty to Homosassa Springs State Park to breed with females. Manatee County officials successfully oppose loss of mascot.

1993

Museum moves Snooty into 60,000-gallon pool.

1998

Snooty gets company at last: Newton, a male orphan from Miami. A month after Snooty turns 50, Newton dies of bacterial infection.

2000

Save the Manatee Club sues government over manatee deaths caused by boats. Suit leads to new regulations, sparking a move to declare manatees no longer on endangered list.

2007

Gov. Charlie Crist meets Buffett in Tampa, hears personal appeal to stop downlisting of manatees. Crist announces opposition, halting the move.

July 21, 2008

Snooty turns 60.

A manatee milestone: Snooty turning 60 07/18/08 [Last modified: Tuesday, July 22, 2008 3:03pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Rays morning after: Wilson Ramos showing glimpses of what's possible in 2018

    Blogs

    The real payoff for the Rays signing C Wilson Ramos last off-season will come in 2018, when he can play a full season fully recovered from right knee surgery.

    And Ramos is giving the Rays a pretty good glimpse of what that can be like.

    In Friday's 8-3 win over the Orioles, he hit a grand slam - …

  2. Buccaneers-Vikings Scouting Report: Watching Kyle Rudolph, Adam Thielen and Everson Griffen

    Bucs

    No matter how much film we study, no matter how much data we parse, we just don't know how an NFL season will unfold.

  3. Pinellas construction licensing board needs to be fixed. But how?

    Local Government

    LARGO –– Everyone agrees that the Pinellas County Construction Licensing Board needs to be reformed. But no one agrees on how to do it.

    Rodney Fischer, former executive director of the Pinellas County Construction Licensing Board Rodney, at a February meeting. His management of the agency was criticized by an inspector general's report. [SCOTT KEELER   |   Times]

  4. Sue Carlton: Job or family when a hurricane's coming — a very Florida conundrum

    Hurricanes

    It must seem as foreign to Northerners as shoveling snow is to those of us raised in the Sunshine State: The very-Florida conundrum of having to choose between work and family — between paycheck and personal safety — when a hurricane comes.

    A hurricane helps the rest of us acknowledge the police officers, paramedics, hospital personnel, public works employees and others who stay on the job despite the storm. 
  5. After Tampa concert, Arcade Fire members party, preach politics at Crowbar

    Blogs

    After waiting more than a decade for Arcade Fire’s first appearance in Tampa, fans didn’t have to wait long for their second.

    DJ Windows 98, a.k.a. singer Win Butler of Arcade Fire, performed at a "Disco Town Hall" at Crowbar following the band's concert at the USF Sun Dome on Sept. 22, 2017.