Dolphin Discovery is pleased to announce the newest addition to our Riviera Maya family, a beautiful bouncing baby boy manatee! On Thursday September 9th at 1:00 pm, Julieta gave birth to a male measuring 1.2 meters long, the third calf born to our lovely matriarch. Immediately after giving birth, Julieta helped the little one to reach the surface to take his first breath and introduced herself as “mom” with physical, visual and auditory contact with the calf. He is feeding well and adjusting to his new life in Puerto Aventuras. Julieta is a great mama, keeping a close eye on her newborn, with her experience as a mother we are sure that this lovely new creature will continue to grow and thrive.
The reproductive rate of manatees is generally very low. Females do not reach sexual maturity until the age of 5, males at the age of 9. Gestation lasts for one year and calves nurse from their moms for about a year and will be reliant on them for up to two years. Females give birth to one pup at a time and may wait 2-5 years before reproducing again. Male manatees do not get involved in raising their young, it is the sole responsibility of the mothers.
This is an exciting event for Dolphin Discovery, another success in our breeding program and it’s extra special as manatees are an endangered species. This new baby gives us an opportunity to continue to learn and gather information and allows our team to explore alternatives and solutions to the problems facing manatees in the wild. We would like to offer our congratulations not only to Julieta, but to our dedicated team of veterinarians, biologists and trainers. Welcome to the world little boy!