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World's oldest manatee turns 65

Posted on Monday, 22 July, 2013 | Comment icon 10 comments | News tip by: Still Waters

Image credit: Chris Muenzer

A manatee in Florida has highlighted the way in which captivity can unnaturally extend animal lifespans.

Known as Sooty, the manatee is not only the oldest living manatee but possibly the oldest to have ever existed. A resident at the South Florida Museum in Bradenton, the sea-born mammal was celebrated with a special party that took place on Sunday. Sooty eats about 80 pounds of vegetable matter every day and shares a tank with two smaller manatees that are being rehabilitated.

"If you lived in a pool where people gave you a bath and fed you lettuce by hand and you had no other predators and the water was always a nice warm temperature, you'd be living long too," said the museum's executive director Brynne Anne Besio.

"Snooty the manatee was born when Harry S. Truman was president, Columbia records had just released its 33 1/3 LP format, and people were still talking about how the NBC television network had broadcast Beethoven's Ninth Symphony in its entirety."

  View: Full article |  Source: Yahoo! News

  Discuss: View comments (10)


Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #1 Posted by Purifier on 22 July, 2013, 12:39
I hope I look that good when I reach that age.
Comment icon #2 Posted by Darkwind on 22 July, 2013, 17:07
Poor Snooty lives all alone in a small pool. I have seen him and fed him some lettuse. Kind of a sad life for a manatee.
Comment icon #3 Posted by Sundew on 22 July, 2013, 18:27
They should have gotten him a buddy or a mate, manatees are social animals. Aside from boat collisions they really don't have any natural predators so it's amazing that they don't all live long lives. Their biggest enemy is the cold, they don't have blubber like a whale and chill pretty easily. When record low temperatures come to Florida they are also plagued by pneumonia and a cold snap in that state killed hundreds a few years back. In winter they pack into Florida's springs where the water temperature stays a relatively warm 72 degrees; often there are so many you could... [More]
Comment icon #4 Posted by ashven on 22 July, 2013, 19:42
I'm sure if he could talk he'd want quality of life rather than quantity
Comment icon #5 Posted by d e v i c e on 22 July, 2013, 21:06
He's been robbed of his freedom and mollycoddled all his life. That's not what he wanted. Happy b-day great manatee. You will be free, one day.
Comment icon #6 Posted by moonshadow60 on 22 July, 2013, 21:20
Has he been kept away from his own kind for all of that time? Oh, Lord. I wouldn't want to live so long without being able to communicate with anybody. The poor fellow.
Comment icon #7 Posted by Darkwind on 22 July, 2013, 23:05
They should have taken him to the park at Homasassa Springs. They have a big lake with Manatees in it and they have a viewing window under the water. I was amazed how they would interact with the people looking at them. I wasn't expecting them to be so playful.
Comment icon #8 Posted by Lava_Lady on 30 July, 2013, 23:31
I saw a documentary once that said they are often hit by motor/speed boats and suffer fatal injuries in the wild. Regardless, it's a slow, lonely death to be in captivity like that.
Comment icon #9 Posted by Eldorado on 5 August, 2013, 7:27
In jail his entire life. Poor Snooty.
Comment icon #10 Posted by jesspy on 7 August, 2013, 11:09
Now you put it that way I am sad. Poor Snooty.

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