KILL DEVIL HILLS, N.C. — Rescue teams tried to help a manatee that washed up on the beach of Kill Devil Hills Thursday morning, but the sea cow didn't survive.
Charlena Ambrose came across the manatee during a walk. She said she takes morning visits to the beach often.
"This morning I saw what I thought was a seal," she told 13News Now. "I walked over and saw it appeared to be a manatee!"
She dialed 9-1-1 to get it some help, and said she was connected with the Outer Banks Marine Mammal Stranding Network. They were surprised to get her photo of what was definitely a manatee, and agreed to come see if they could do anything.
Ambrose said she stayed with the marine mammal for about 45 minutes, even though she couldn't do much to help on her own.
Ultimately, even though the rescuers showed up, the manatee didn't make it.
An organization called Save the Manatee said this species migrates to stay in warm water. In the summertime, manatees can be found in areas of Virginia, and migrate south past North Carolina to get to warmer waters starting around November.
They prefer to stay in water that's about 3-16 feet deep.