Orphaned Sea Otter Pup Transferred to Shedd Aquarium in Chicago

An orphaned 5-week-old southern California sea otter pup was transferred to the Shedd Aquarium in Chicago, where it's getting round-the-clock care from Shedd specialists. (PHOTO CREDIT: Terrence Antonio James, Chicago Tribune)
An orphaned 5-week-old southern California sea otter pup was transferred to the Shedd Aquarium in Chicago, where it’s getting round-the-clock care from Shedd specialists. (PHOTO CREDIT: Terrence Antonio James, Chicago Tribune)

The Shedd Aquarium has announced the arrival of its newest inhabitant: a southern sea otter pup.

The 5-week-old otter was orphaned on a California beach, but after weeks of intensive care, Pup 681 — the name given to her by the organization that first took her in — seems to be enjoying her new home in the Windy City.

The pup was discovered Sept. 30 on Coastways Beach in central California when she was believed to be 1 week old, according to a media release. A jogger heard the pup crying and notified the Marine Mammal Center. Pup 681 was taken to the Monterey Bay Aquarium for care.

Karl Meyer, an animal care coordinator for the Sea Otter Program, said the pup weighed 1 kg when she arrived at the aquarium in California, which is seriously underweight for a newborn. He said the pup’s mother had abandoned her for at least 16 hours.

“This meant it was critical that we begin to get calories into her as quickly as possible,” Meyer said in a media release.

After four weeks of intensive care and stabilization in the Sea Otter Program, Monterey Bay Aquarium reached out to aquariums across the country seeking a facility that could provide round-the-clock care for the sea otter pup.

Shedd volunteered and last week brought in the 5-week-old. The aquarium said she arrived weighing just under 6 pounds and at a length of 22.6 inches.

Click here to read more.

SOURCE: Chicago Tribune
Dana Ferguson

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