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Manatee Calf Charms Zoo Visitors

A manatee calf was born on April 24, 2014 at ZooParc de Beauval in France, after a 12-month gestation. Every birth is important for these animals, listed by the International Union for Conservation of Nature as vulnerable to extinction. The biggest threat to these gentle creatures are humans, due to collisions with boats,  becoming ensnared in fishing gear, hunting, toxic algae and pollution.

The calf weighed 55 pounds at birth. Adult manatees weigh anywhere from 880 to 1,210 pounds; females are generally heavier than males. Manatees are born underwater. The mother usually leads the calf up to the surface of the water so they can take their first breath. 

See more photographs at Zooborns.  

Images Credit: ZooParc de Beauval


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