The arrival of “Red Square” marks the beginning of what will be another busy season for staff and volunteers of the Vancouver Aquarium Marine Mammal Rescue Centre. Although the days-old harbour seal arrived at the Rescue Centre underweight and malnourished, he is recovering well under the watchful eye of the Aquarium’s veterinary team.
Red Square was spotted on a beach in Finnerty Cove (near Victoria) by a local resident, who had observed him without his mother for over 24 hours. She called the Rescue Centre and reported that the newly-born seal was squirming around on the beach and that she had seen him suckling on a log.
After Rescue Centre staff gave her specific instructions on how to retrieve and handle the seal pup, Red Square was flown to Vancouver by Harbour Air/WestCoast Air, where he was greeted by the Rescue Centre team.
Each year, staff and volunteers rescue, rehabilitate and release over 150 harbour seal pups, like Red Square, who have been separated from their mothers. Rescue Centre patients also include elephant seals, fur seals, sea otters, sea lions, whales, porpoises and adult harbour seals. Our goal is always to return rescued marine mammals to their natural habitat.
The Vancouver Aquarium Marine Mammal Rescue Centre operates largely on donations and the tireless efforts of staff and volunteers. It is the only rescue hospital of its kind in Canada.
To support the Rescue Centre’s efforts, you can donate here.
Each year, the Rescue Centre takes suggestions for a naming theme that is adopted for the summer season to guide the names of each rescued seal. This season, seal pups will be named after celestial bodies, which was suggested by the Rescue Centre’s supporters.
If you see a stranded marine mammal, do not approach it and keep pets away. Please call the Vancouver Aquarium’s Marine Mammal Rescue Centre at 604.258.SEAL (7325) for immediate assistance.
Vancouver Aquarium Marine Mammal Rescue Centre is grateful for the support of its presenting sponsor, Port Metro Vancouver.