The manatee - or sea cow, as it is often called - is a great, lumbering, friendly sea creature that is under constant threat in its ocean habitat. Many factors (most of them man-made) affect the survival of these gentle creatures, not the least of which is being caught in or cut by the propellers of various sea vessels of all sizes. Many of the manatee survivors of these encounters are identified by researchers and conservationists by their individual scarring patterns.
No one is quite sure what fate befell the mother of the orphaned manatee calf in the below video. The baby was rescued and brought to the Sea World Orlando facility where it is being cared for and closely monitored by staff. The baby's condition is guarded, but the marine biologists hope to nurse the calf through this difficult and critical time and eventually release it back into the wild.