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Manatee Trapped in a Tire of a Bicycle is Rescued at the Docks
International, 8/5/2015

The staff of the Department of Natural and Environmental Resources (DHARNA, by its acronym in Spanish) and the Conservation Center of Manatees of Puerto Rico rescued a baby manatee of 5’ long and two years old, that was trapped in a tire of a bicycle and rescued in the Condado Lagoon after two days of work, informed the secretary Carmen R. Guerrero Pérez.

The rescue occurred in the Piedra del Perro vicinity and the Dos Hermanos bridge, in the Condado, sector of San Juan.

Dr. Nilda Jiménez, of the DRNA Program of Marine Rescue, said she always sought the baby was in contact with the mother because the intention was to release him so he could stay with her. She said they could remove the tire and pull it over its body without cutting forceps. Jiménez explained that it is the first time they report a manatee trapped in a tire of a bicycle, the most common is entanglement in fishing line.

The West Indian manatee is an endangered species whose population fluctuates between 300 and 600 individuals for the entire island.

According to Dr. Antonio Mignucci, director of the Manatee Conservation Center and professor at the Interamerican University, Bayamón Campus, this small manatee saw first hand the consequences of littering on the coast and the sea. This rubber bicycle tire could’ve cost the life of this manatee. It took about 10 hours, about 15 people, five kayaks, boat and helicopter to find the manatee, and to be able to remove the bicycle tire of his body.



Topic(s):    Biodiversity