Yesterday morning, SeaWorld Orlando's animal care team assisted Lil Joe the manatee back into the waters of Lake Dexter in Astor, Fla.
Have you ever wondered what it would be like to go on a manatee release? Here's a peek into yesterday's release.
7:00 a.m. -- The 1,515-pound Lil Joe was lifted by a heavy-duty crane from his three-month home at SeaWorld Orlando into a truck for transport to Lake Dexter.
9:00 a.m. -- SeaWorld's animal care team and Lil Joe arrive at Lake Dexter. The animal care team fitted Lil Joe with a tracking device, so that his health can constantly be monitored.
10:00 a.m. -- Not-so-little Lil Joe was loaded into SeaWorld's animal rescue boat. It took more than eight people to lift him only a few inches!
10:30 a.m. -- Lil Joe was released into Lake Dexter where several other manatees already live and will help him get acclimated. He's already doing well as he started nibbling on nearby vegetation, which is a good sign.
Lil Joe was first rescued and brought to SeaWorld in 1989. The whole SeaWorld team wishes nothing but the best for their old friend. Learn more about SeaWorld's Rehabilitation and Rescue program by taking the Behind-the-Scenes tour. For more on the big story of Lil Joe the manatee, click here!