Rescued manatee, calf returned to Jacksonville waters

3:17 PM, Oct 16, 2012   |    comments
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Tampa, Florida -- A pregnant manatee who was rescued Jan. 31 from a Jacksonville river was released Tuesday, along with her calf.

Lowry Park Zoo officials say Joannie was suffering from cold stress when she was rescued and, after several months of care, has since recovered. Her rehab team determined she was ready to return to Jacksonville waters. 

Photo Gallery: Rescued manatee, calf returned to Jacksonville waters

Her male calf, Lad, who was born at the David A. Straz Jr. Manatee Hospital at Tampa's Lowry Park Zoo on July 13, will be released with her. Lad was only the fourth manatee born at the Tampa zoo weighing in at 66.8 pounds. 

Today, he is a strapping young calf at 145 pounds.  His mother Joannie, now healthy and strong, was weighed in just before her release at 1,225 pounds.

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