After rehab stint, manatee's back home in the waters of Tampa Bay

A young female manatee nicknamed Petunia is back home in the waters of Pinellas County after an extensive rehab stint at the David A. Straz, Jr. Manatee Hospital at Tampa's Lowry Park Zoo.

The manatee was found last fall in Booker Creek in St. Petersburg, severely emaciated at just 230 pounds. After eight months of care at the zoo hospital, she slipped into the water Tuesday morning at downtown St. Petersburg's Demens Landing weighing a robust 640 pounds.

The zoo's rehab team and members of the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission's Fish and Wildlife Research Institute worked together to return the manatee to the waters of Tampa Bay.

After rehab stint, manatee's back home in the waters of Tampa Bay 05/15/12 [Last modified: Tuesday, May 15, 2012 3:15pm]

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