Orphaned Sea Otter Pup Rescued by Ocean Wise is Named!

(Image: Ocean Wise)

An orphaned male sea otter pup — estimated to be just 10 days old — is now in intensive care at the Ocean Wise Marine Mammal Rescue Centre. The pup was discovered near Kyuquot after a concerned member of the public heard it vocalizing and discovered a deceased adult sea otter in the area, presumed to be its mother. Rescue Centre staff are now stabilizing the pup at the hospital under around the clock care. Staff and volunteers are rotating shifts feeding, bathing and grooming the newborn.

“Sea otter pups are incredibly dependent on their mothers for the first 6 months of their lives. This pup would normally learn to groom, swim and feed from its mother, so he has quite a long journey ahead of him.” said Dr. Martin Haulena, head veterinarian at the Marine Mammal Rescue Centre.

(Image: Ocean Wise)

The pup, whom staff have affectionately named Joey as a tribute to a long-time supporter who helped re-open the Rescue Centre this season, highlights the integral work of the Marine Mammal Rescue Centre, the only one of its kind in Canada, which is operated by Ocean Wise (the parent organization of the Vancouver Aquarium), so orphans like Joey have a chance at survival.

“It was really an incredible effort to get him to the Rescue Centre safely. He wouldn’t have been able to survive much longer on his own so we’re really grateful that we were able to get him treatment quickly,” – Lindsaye Akhurst, manager of the Marine Mammal Rescue Centre.

(Image: Ocean Wise)The team rescues, rehabilitates, and releases more than 120 animals each year! For every patient, the goal is to treat, rehabilitate and return it to the wild as soon as possible. The veterinary team provides medical treatment to harbour seals, sea otters, sea lions, sea turtles, elephant seals, whales, dolphins, and porpoises.

In 2017, The Marine Mammal Rescue Centre team successfully rehabilitated Hardy, a rescued sea otter pup after he was discovered by boaters alone in the water. Hardy, deemed non-releasable by Fisheries and Oceans Canada, now resides happily with 5 other rescued sea otters at the Vancouver Aquarium.

Hardy in his home at Vancouver Aquarium (Image: Vancouver Aquarium)

The Ocean Wise Marine Mammal Rescue Centre was able to re-open its doors last month thanks to an outpouring of support and donations from the Vancouver community and global supporters. The rescue centre is supported by revenue generated at the not-for-profit Vancouver Aquarium and was at risk of remaining closed this season due to the Aquarium’s 3-month closure and ongoing financial hardships. To make a contribution to the care of this sea otter pup, please visit ocean.org/otter.

The Vancouver Aquarium, which is now open to the public, is a self-supporting, accredited institution and does not receive ongoing funds to provide around-the-clock care for its rescued and rehabilitated animals. To support the Rescue Centre and enjoy an awe-inspiring visit to the Vancouver Aquarium, please visit vanaqua.org/visit/tickets.

(Image: Ocean Wise)

If you see marine wildlife in distress, please keep people and pets away and call the Ocean Wise Marine Mammal Rescue Centre hotline at 604.258.SEAL (7325) or Fisheries and Oceans Canada incident reporting hotline at 1-800-465-4336.




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