VIDEO: Weak, emaciated sea lion rescued from Campbell River beach

He’s now being cared for at the Vancouver Aquarium Marine Mammal Rescue Centre

This week, a team from the Vancouver Aquarium Marine Mammal Rescue Centre rescued an emaciated and weak California sea lion from a Campbell River beach.

“We received several calls from concerned members of the public about a sea lion at Willow Point,” said Lindsaye Akhurst, manager of the Rescue Centre, in a statement Friday.

“We do see a large number of male California sea lions arriving in our area at this time of year, but it’s unusual to see one remain for several days on a beach where there is human activity.”

Working with personnel from Fisheries and Oceans Canada, the team assessed the animal and determined it needed to be admitted to the Rescue Centre for treatment.

On Tuesday, the team travelled to Vancouver Island and was able to secure and transport the young male back to the Rescue Centre in Vancouver.

The animal is estimated at three to four years old based on the smaller size of his sagittal crest, the bony protrusion on his head. A thorough exam by the veterinary team on Thursday determined the animal is dehydrated and emaciated; and weighs only about 100 kilograms, or 220 lbs.

Bloodwork, urinalysis, x-rays and ultrasounds showed some abnormalities in his blood consistent with renal changes, as well as some degree of pneumonia in his lungs and an old fracture to his left hind flipper.

Vancouver Aquarium head veterinarian Dr. Martin Haulena said many of the symptoms are consistent with prolonged malnutrition and dehydration. Since being admitted, he’s been treated with supportive therapy, fluids and medication.

Akhurst said members of the public who called in to report the animal did the right thing.

“Sea lions are large, wild animals and can be unpredictable,”Akhurst said.

California sea lions – or Zalophus californianus – breed off the coast of Southern California and the Baja peninsula.

During the non-breeding season, large numbers of animals, mostly male, migrate north to B.C. Despite being hunted for thousands of years until they were protected in the 1970s, the current population of California sea lions is considered healthy.

If you see a marine mammal that you believe is in distress: stay back, keep people and pets away, call the Marine Mammal Rescue Centre at 604-258-SEAL (7325).

 

A team from the Vancouver Aquarium Marine Mammal Rescue Centre rescued an emaciated and weak California sea lion from a Campbell River beach this week.

Just Posted

VIDEO: Merville wildlife rescuers tell story with new visitor centre

Mountainaire Avian Rescue Society opened visitor centre to support animal work

HMCS Quadra cadets celebrate General Training graduation in Comox

Cadets from across the country come to train at HMCS Quadra for… Continue reading

Comox Strathcona Waste Management compares landfill costs in region

Staff report shows economies of scale mean waste costs less in the Comox Valley

Pride Week in the Comox Valley

Pride Week in the Comox Valley kicked off with Pride flag raisings… Continue reading

Busy as a bee in a lavender field

Bees are in abundance at Shamrock Farm off Anderton Road flocking to… Continue reading

VIDEO: Young couple found dead in northern B.C. had been shot, police say

Chynna Noelle Deese of the U.S. and Lucas Robertson Fowler of Australia were found along Highway 97

VIDEO: Man found dead near B.C. teens’ truck could be linked to a double homicide

RCMP said they are looking for Kam McLeod, 19, and Bryer Schmegelsky, 18, of Port Alberni

Latest plan is to fly trapped fish by helicopter over Big Bar slide

Multi-pronged plan set in motion to freesalmon blocked by landslide in the Fraser River

Family of missing B.C. senior with dementia frustrated with situation, heartened by community support

Nine days since Grace was last seen the question remains: ‘How can an 86-year-old just disappear?’

Police ask for help locating missing men last seen in South Surrey

Jeep that Richard Scurr and Ryan Provencher were in has been located unoccupied in Logan Lake: RCMP

Islanders have new cancer screening option with $6.5 M diagnostic suite in Victoria

The Gordon Heys Family PET/CT Suite was unveiled at the BC Cancer Centre-Victoria

Host Jets win peewee baseball tournament

The host Comox Valley peewee A Jets won the North Island Classic… Continue reading

Unsealed record suggests U.S. man convicted of murdering Vancouver Island couple left DNA on zip tie in 1987

William Talbott is set to be sentenced Wednesday in the murders of Jay Cook and Tanya Van Cuylenborg

Okanagan Air Cadet challenges gender-exclusive haircut policy

Haircut regulation inspires challenge around gender identity

Most Read