"Florida Rescuers Struggle To Save Manatees Hit By Deadly Algae"

Rescuers are struggling to save manatees in Florida, there a Red Tide algal bloom has killed 181 of the mammals so far this year.

"TAMPA, Fla. -- Virginia Edmonds, standing in shallow water, used her legs to slowly nudge an ailing young manatee to one side of a treatment pool. A half dozen other female members of a manatee rehabilitation team hovered close by - one with a syringe - waiting for the signal.

'OK!' Edmonds called, as the others jumped in and threw a mat over the manatee to try and hold it still.

The 545-pound (247-kg) mammal bucked, thrashed, rolled and tossed the women off before they could inject an antibiotic; just one minor challenge in an effort to rescue and treat members of this endangered species that are dying in record numbers from an algae bloom.

The so-called Red Tide algae bloom has killed a total of 181 manatees so far this year, according to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission."

Saundra Amrhein reports for Reuters March 14, 2013.

Source: Reuters, 03/15/2013