19 Manatees Saved From Fla. Storm Drain

They had probably been trying to keep warm amid cold snap
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Feb 24, 2015 11:40 AM CST
Crowds gathered in Satellite Beach, Fla., Monday, Feb. 23, 2015, to watch officials work to save manatees stuck in a drainage pipe.   (AP Photo/Florida Today, Malcolm Denemark)
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(Newser) – Rescuers working late into the night freed 19 manatees who were stuck in a storm drain in central Florida. A Satellite Beach Fire Department rep said early today that the 19 manatees are all alive and have been returned to the Indian River Lagoon System. A manatee-rescue team from the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, along with police and firefighters, were helping the marine mammals last night.

Rescuers brought heavy earth-moving equipment to the Satellite Beach neighborhood, located on a barrier island along the Atlantic Ocean. "It's been cold lately and these canals are all filled with manatees,'' Satellite Beach's fire chief told Florida Today. "I wouldn't even begin to venture a guess as to how they got into the drainage pipes. They will go wherever there's warm water."

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