Mientras gran parte del país se tuvo que preparar para temperaturas peligrosamente frías la semana pasada, los equipos de rescate en también comenzaron a ver los efectos de las bajas temperaturas del agua en la población de manatíes del estado.
 
Un manatí casi adulto de 328 Kg de peso, llegó al hospital de cuidados críticos para animales de SeaWorld Orlando con síntomas de estrés por frío, como abscesos y deshidratación. El manatí fue rescatado en Lake Griffin, cerca de Eustis, Florida, en el centro del Estado, por Florida Fish and Wildlife (FWC), Sea2Shore y por una representación local del Club Save the Manatee. Después de una evaluación de campo, el animal fue transportado al parque donde los veterinarios comenzaron un tratamiento médico y una rehabilitación que incluye antibióticos, líquidos y otros cuidados de apoyo.
 
"Incluso aquí en Florida, las temperaturas locales del agua están comenzando a bajar a menos de 20 grados centígrados, que es el umbral para que sobrevivan los manatíes", explicó Jon Peterson, gerente de operaciones de rescate de SeaWorld Orlando. "Los manatíes necesitan agua tibia, y cuando las temperaturas bajan, corren un alto riesgo de sucumbir al frío".
 
 "Nuestro objetivo para este manatí rescatado es continuar rehabilitándolo aquí en SeaWorld y devolverlo a la naturaleza cuando las temperaturas del agua se calienten", dijo Peterson.
 
 En 2018, el equipo de rescate de SeaWorld contribuyó con la rehabilitación del número récord de 72 manatíes que sufrían alteraciones como estrés por frío, marea roja y enredos. SeaWorld trabaja con Manatee Rescue & Rehabilitation Partnership (MRP), un grupo cooperativo de entidades sin fines de lucro, privadas, estatales y federales que monitorean la salud y la supervivencia de los manatíes rehabilitados y liberados.
 
 El equipo de rescate de SeaWorld está disponible las 24 horas del día, los 7 días de la semana, los 365 días del año, para brindarle a los animales marinos una segunda oportunidad de vida.

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