FIT Coaches Help SeaWorld, FWC Release Manatees
By Ryan Jones // December 6, 2013
Amy O’Brien discovered manatee in distress
ABOVE VIDEO: SeaWorld has a legacy of animal rescue spanning more than four decades and benefiting more than 22,000 animals, responding to wildlife in crisis is a commitment we take to heart. Working in partnership with state, local, and federal agencies, SeaWorld’s rescue teams are on call 24/7 assisting animals that are orphaned, ill, injured or in need of expert care.
BREVARD COUNTY, FLORIDA – Four of Florida Tech’s coaches gave a manatee a second chance at life when they assisted SeaWorld Rescue and the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission in releasing it into the Indian River lagoon Tuesday morning.
The release of the manatee, named Vesuvia by SeaWorld and nicknamed “Manny” by head volleyball coach Amy O’Brien, was the first manatee release in two days for SeaWorld and FWC in Brevard County.
Earlier on Thursday, the two organizations waved goodbye to another rehabilitated manatee, Dorothy Gail, at Parrish Park in Titusville.
Both manatees recovered from watercraft injuries.
VESUVIA RETURNED TO INDIAN RIVER IN MELBOURNE
Vesuvia, a five-year-old sub adult female manatee, was returned to the waters of Front Street Park in Melbourne. O’Brien discovered Vesuvia near Kiwanis Park off the Melbourne Causeway on a jog in April. She then called the FWC, who immediately responded to the area.
In need of help lifting the manatee out of the water for transportation to SeaWorld Orlando, assistant football coaches Rod Hardy, Mike Nahl, Dan Sabock and Austin Silvoy along with head strength and conditioning coach Ethan Tyler arrived to help rescue the sea cow.
At SeaWorld, she received radiographs, antibiotics and regular flushing of deep abscesses on her body. During rehabilitation, Vesuvia gained 110 pounds and weighed 855 pounds when she was returned.
On Tuesday, Hardy, Nahl, O’Brien and Tyler returned Vesuvia to her home. Sabock and Silvoy were on the road recruiting.
“I’m happy Manny made a full recovery,” O’Brien said. “SeaWorld did a great job taking care of her because we were not sure she would make it. It was special for the coaches and me to see her again.”
CLICK HERE TO VIEW PHOTOS OF RELEASE BY PANTHER COACHES
In collaboration with the government and other members of accredited stranding networks, SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment operates one of the world’s most respected programs to rescue ill and injured marine animals, with the goal to rehabilitate and return to the waters.
SeaWorld animal experts have helped more than 22,000 animals in need – ill, injured, orphaned and abandoned – for more than four decades. So far this year, SeaWorld Orlando has rescued 17 manatees and returned 10, including today’s return.
The Manatee Rescue & Rehabilitation Partnership (MRP) is a cooperative group of non-profit, private, state, and federal entities who work together to monitor the health and survival of rehabilitated and released manatees.
Information about manatees currently being tracked is available at WildTracks.org. If you see injured marine animal, you can help by calling the FWC hotline at 888-404-3922 or by dialing *FWC on a cellular device.