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Rescued Seal Given A New Life at New York Aquarium

Posted By : The Animal Facts Editorial Team

Date: March 8, 2021 9:45 pm

sidney the rescue seal new york aquarium

Sidney the rescued harbor seal settles in at the New York Aquarium

Photo Credit: Julie Larsen Maher © WCS

A female harbor seal as moved to the New York Aquarium for a second chance at life after being rescued in Laguna Beach California. Now named Sidney the pup was found with her umbilical cord still attached alone on a beach.

A team from the Pacific Marine Mammal Center (PMMC) rescued her when the pup's mother did not reappear. After an assessment by a vet it was determined she was only a few hours old and had likely been born prematurely.

sidney the rescue seal new york aquarium

Sidney the rescued harbor seal settles in at the New York Aquarium

Photo Credit: Julie Larsen Maher © WCS

At the PMMC care staff provided round-the-clock care for the first month of her life. In the wild these critical first weeks would of been spent nursing and learning basic survival skills. At the center carers replaced this role providing food every two hours.

During this time it was hoped that Sidney would develop the skill's needed to return to the wild. Unfortunately this did not succeed and it was determined she was unlikely to survive in the wild.

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The New York Aquarium responded to requests from the PMMC and the National Marine Fisheries Service to provide a new home for Sidney. Animal care staff from the aquarium travelled to the PMMC and spent time with Sidney to develop a bond before her transport. Once she was readily entering her transport crate she was ready to travel.

Sidney arrived at the New York Aquarium in November and has since worked with animal care staff to ensure she was comfortable in her new environment. They have also worked to integrate her with the rest of the harbor seal family.

Visitors at the aquarium can now meet Sidney in the Sea Cliffs habitat. She has developed a strong bond with Murphy who was born at the aquarium last summer and the pair are now active playmates.

sidney the rescue seal new york aquarium

Sidney the rescued harbor seal while in care at the Pacific Marine Mammal Center

Photo Credit: © PMMC

“We are grateful for the excellent care that the rescue team at the PMMC provided Sidney, and we will make sure she is well cared for at the New York Aquarium,” said Craig Piper, Interim Director of the New York Aquarium and WCS Director of City Zoos.

“We’re proud to partner with other conservation organizations to help individual animals like Sidney while also working to protect entire species and their habitats around the world.  As New Yorkers come to see Sidney, she will be an endearing ambassador for her species and other marine life, which we believe will have a positive impact on the way people think about and engage with nature.”

sidney the rescue seal new york aquarium

Sidney the rescued harbor seal settles in at the New York Aquarium

Photo Credit: Julie Larsen Maher © WCS

Learn more about the New York Aquarium on their website – New York Aquarium

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