South Florida Museum releases two manatees into the wild - WFLA News Channel 8

South Florida Museum releases two manatees into the wild

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Charlie gets a final check of his tag.  Photo courtesy South Florida Museum. Charlie gets a final check of his tag. Photo courtesy South Florida Museum.
HOMOSASSA SPRINGS, FL (WFLA) -

Charlie the manatee is now swimming free.  The South Florida Museum set him free at Homosassa Springs Monday.

Charlie was rescued as a young calf in 2010 with his mother, according to the museum records. She was a victim of a boat accident and didn't survive. The Miami Seaquarium's manatee hospital workers bottle-fed Charlie and taught him how to eat whole food. He came to the museum in Bradenton in May 2011 to finish his rehab.

Charlie followed Epoc, who was released on January 23 near Apollo Beach. Epoc came to the South Florida Museum in 2011 suffering from a cold stress, the museum workers said.

"I'm very pleased to say that we just released both the young manatees," said Marilyn Margold, the Museum's Director of Living Collections.  "Both are tagged and will be monitored for up to a year to make sure they are adjusting well to life in the wild."

You can follow the movements of Charlie and Epoc online at http://www.wildtracks.org/.

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