FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. – Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission biologists asked the public Thursday to be mindful of the manatees when they throw debris into bodies of water in South Florida.
FWC staff rescued a 300-pound manatee in distress in Fort Lauderdale, after the juvenile female was entangled in a life vest. The manatee suffered minor scrapes and the biologists feared the vest could cause a serious impediment to the mammal's ability to forage.
The biologists warn that the garbage left behind when entangled or ingested can be fatal for marine life in South Florida. For more information or to report an animal in distress, call the FWC’s Wildlife Alert Hotline 1-888-404-3922.