Manatee Conservation Work

Manatee Conservation Work

Georgia Aquarium’s Research and Conservation team organizes many amazing R&C initiatives relating to the key species in our collection; whale sharks, manta rays, dolphins, penguins, and corals. At times, our team has also been invited to join in research conducted by other institutions, including opportunities on the OCEARCH vessel, sand tiger shark research in Delaware, sting ray health assessments in the Cayman Islands, and manatee health assessments right here in Georgia. At other times, the Aquarium will sponsor an organization and the important work they do. A great example of such a sponsorship is the recent request assistance by the Rainforest Awareness, Rescue and Education Center (RAREC) in Iquitos, Peru.

The RAREC team works to rescue and rehabilitate wildlife along the Amazon River as well as perform community outreach to educate the local communities about the flora and fauna found there and the importance of its conservation. Recently, the RAREC team discovered a group of Amazonian manatees in the care of a private individual in less than ideal conditions. After convincing the holder to relinquish possession of the animals, they were moved to the Center for rehabilitation. Once there, the animals were given a full physical work up where it was discovered that the manatees were in fair health. It was at this time that RAREC reached out to Dr. Gregory Bossart, Senior Vice President of Animal Health, Research and Conservation for assistance. Dr. Bossart has worked with many manatee rehabilitation centers during his career in aquatic mammal health and rehabilitation. Georgia Aquarium was able to assist with a financial donation that will help continue the veterinary and nutritional care these manatees need during their rehabilitation, funds to help with community education of the areas surrounding the release site, and post-release observation of the individuals.

The RAREC team has been giving frequent updates and it appears the animals are progressing nicely and will be ready for their release somewhere in the near future. Please look for updates on this case as we will share them as they are received.


GAI logo RAREC manatee