Sixty-eight may not seem that old, but for Snooty the manatee, it’s a world record.
Snooty is now the world’s oldest manatee living in captivity, the Guinness World Records recently announced.
“We felt it was important to apply on Snooty’s behalf, because we wanted people to understand that manatees can live for a long time,” Marilyn Margold, director of living collections at South Florida Museum, said in a video for the Guinness World Records.
Though they may look hearty, most manatees living in the wild die before they reach the age of 10.
According to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, which monitors manatee populations, the oldest wild manatee in Florida was 59 years old – with the next oldest having reached 48 years of age.
Snooty’s longevity is credited to the fact that he lives in a controlled environment, a 60,000-gallon pool he shares with two other manatees at South Florida Museum.
The manatee breeding program at the museum offers visitors an educational opportunity to see that manatees do have personalities and a level of intelligence, Margold said.