One of the most popular residents at the Vancouver Aquarium these days is Katmai, a 10-month-old sea otter pup. You can find Katmai delighting onlookers as she playfully tackles her companion Tanu, or shoots herself through the water like a furry torpedo. Although Katmai is rambunctious and full of energy today, Katmai came to the Aquarium after she was found malnourished and alone on the side of the road in Alaska at only four weeks old.
Through its Marine Mammal Rescue Centre, the Vancouver Aquarium rescues and rehabilitates over 150 marine animals each year. The animals are often stranded, injured, sick or abandoned by their mothers. Rescue Centre staff and volunteers provide thousands of hours of emergency care and rehabilitation for distressed animals, with the goal of releasing them back into the wild. Some animals however, like Katmai, are deemed non-releasable and therefore find permanent homes in human care.
As a non-profit organization, the rescue and care of animals like Katmai wouldn’t be possible without the support of the community. The Vancouver Aquarium’s annual gala, Night at the Aquarium, is its biggest and most important fundraising event. On June 13, guests get to see many of the marine animals that they have helped rescue, and learn about the Vancouver Aquarium’s conservation and research programs that their generous contributions support.
Of course, guests at Night at the Aquarium also get to experience sumptuous Ocean Wise dishes, exquisite wines and great entertainment while celebrating the conservation of aquatic life. The evening includes coveted live- and silent-auction items that include a trip for two to Antarctica, fishing adventures, a VIP experience at the RBC Canadian Open, a dive with the Aquarium’s belugas, and many more once-in-a-lifetime experiences.
Today, Katmai lives a safe and healthy life at the Vancouver Aquarium where she receives ongoing care from a team of specialists who have a special bond with her. By taking part in Aquarium fundraising events like Night at the Aquarium, guests support the care and treatment of other rescued animals, as well as the Aquarium’s many other important conservation, research and education initiatives.
Purchase tickets to Night at the Aquarium here.