MAITLAND, Fla. — Easter baskets often brim with chocolate eggs and jelly beans. Save the Manatee Club suggests leaving some room for a Florida manatee. The 30-year-old club says that manatee adoptions can add a new personal, caring touch to those old Easter basket favorites.
“I adopted a manatee for my son Conrad as an Easter gift last year,” said Katja Vermehren from Wyoming. “When we visited Homosassa Springs State Park in Florida during our spring break in 2009, my six-year-old son immediately took a liking to the manatees. When he learned about their endangered status, he decided that he wanted to become a marine biologist to save them when he’s older. Once home from our spring break, I thought an adoption from Save the Manatee Club would be a great Easter surprise for him.”
Terri Clark from Colorado chose Ariel from the list of manatee adoptees for her daughter, Riley. “We selected Ariel because we compared the description in the manatee’s biography of playful and curious to our daughter,” explained Terri, who also mentioned that Riley adopted Ariel from the Club with her very own money. “As a family we encourage our children to be passionate about helping others, both humans and animals. Riley became an animal advocate at an early age, and became especially attracted to saving marine animals.”
An Easter gift adoption from Save the Manatee Club costs $25, is tax-deductible, and includes a color photo, biography, and adoption certificate of a real endangered manatee living in Florida. (See photos and a list of the manatees available for adoption on the club’s website at http://www.savethemanatee.org/adoptees.htm.) Also included with the gift adoption is a membership handbook filled with photos, facts, and information, plus subscriptions to the club’s official quarterly newsletter, The Manatee Zone, and the bi-monthly e-newsletter, Paddle Tales. Shipping is free within the United States. For $35, the gift adoption package also includes an 8-inch plush manatee.
“As we celebrate the milestone of Save the Manatee Club’s thirty years of manatee conservation this year, we will have to work hard to hold the line in conservation measures we’ve already won,” said Patrick Rose, aquatic biologist and executive director of Save the Manatee Club. “And with the public’s much needed help and support, we can continue to make critically important progress to save and protect manatees and much of their aquatic habitat for future generations to enjoy.”
To adopt a manatee for Easter, and to learn more about them, visit Save the Manatee Club’s website at www.savethemanatee.org, or call 1-800-432-5646.
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