Crews save beached manatees in New Smyrna

3 sea cows returned to deeper water

NEW SMYRNA BEACH, Fla. – Three manatees are back in deeper waters after they beached near New Smyrna Dunes Park Monday afternoon.

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission said the manatees, two males and one female, each weigh almost 1,000 pounds.  The rescue happened just before 3 p.m.

[RELATED: Where to see wild manatees in Florida]

Video from Sky 6 showed dozens of people gathered around during the rescue. FWC officials said once the manatees were determined to be healthy, a team of wildlife experts and biologists brought the sea cows back to deeper water. 

Taylor Teasley was on the beach saw the rescue unfold. 

[READ: Alligator 'rides' on manatee at Florida state park]

"Lifeguards, protection people and they rescued the manatees, they brought them out to deeper water and they, like, saved them, which was great. I think they’re important to our ecosystem, especially in Florida," Teasley said.

FWC is urging people to be careful and never push stranded manatees back into the water. They say bystanders could get hurt or be seriously injured.  If you see a sick, dead or injured manatee, please call FWC’s Wildlife Alert Hotline: at 1-888-404-FWCC (3922).

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