Photo by Graham S. Jones, Columbus Zoo and Aquarium

Millennium, Falcon, Jedi and Junebug — four names you will need to burn into your frontal lobe. Why? They’re just some incredibly named baby manatees that are now calling Columbus home.

Twins, Millennium & Falcon — earned local fame in Florida after their mother, a famous manatee (famous for a manatee) suffered fatal boat-related injuries — a common fate for these docile aquatic mammals. The twins weigh just over 100 pounds each, making them the smallest manatees to arrive at the Columbus Zoo. (The last arrival weighed 222 pounds; adults reach up to 1,300 pounds.) 

 “Anytime we get babies here, we’re excited. But to help these young manatees in particular – because their mother was so loved and her death mourned by so many – and to do so all the way in Ohio, is pretty special,” said Becky Ellsworth, Shores region curator. “I think the public is going to fall in love.”

 With the new arrivals, the Zoo will have more mouths to feed and, consequently, more water to filter. To address this need, the Zoo is dedicating its annual Giving Tuesday campaign – a fundraiser that focuses on a species in need every Thanksgiving season — to the baby manatees.

For more information or to donate, please visit the Zoo’s Facebook page or

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