Harbor seal pups are on the ups in Seward.
The Alaska SeaLife Center, the state’s only permanent marine mammal rehabilitation facility, announced it has admitted six harbor seal pups this month.
The most recent pup, a male, was found on June 15 in Juneau, the center said in a release. He was picked up in the center’s new Wildlife Response van, according to SeaLife Center. The vehicle was donated by Marathon Petroleum Corporation, HDR Marine, Graphic Works, Partners4Wildlife, Sea Otter Foundation and Reynolds Marine LLC.
The first five pups, four females and a male, were all found stranded in the Cook Inlet area. All the seals arrived malnourished and dehydrated but without significant injuries. The pups are receiving fluids and supplemental tube feedings.
SeaLife Center staff is working to increase the pups’ weight, boost their immune systems and teach them to fish.
“Taking care of six young pups all needing to be tube-fed is a lot of hard work especially with our reduced staffing, but it’s rewarding,” said Dr. Carrie Goertz, Director of Animal Health in the release. “We’ve adapted to COVID-19 restrictions by using staff from other departments instead of hiring seasonal interns and coming up with more efficient ways to manage animal care.”