This California sea lion, nicknamed Whirlybird, was rescued from Corcoran Lagoon in Santa Cruz County on July 2, 2012. Whirlybird, a one year-old, tells a unique and powerful story. This 44 pound sea lion was found on the beach lethargic and with trauma to his eyes and when brought to the Marine Mammal Center was diagnosed with a gunshot wound!
Upon admit, it became clear to our volunteers and veterinarians that the gunshot wounds had permanently blinded him. Due to his blindness, our veterinary staff decided he was not able to survive in the wild but could live a perfectly healthy life in captivity, and we are now looking for a zoo or aquarium where he can live out the rest of his life.
While The Marine Mammal Center has no influence in when/where Whirlybird is placed (that decision is made by The National Marine Fisheries Service) we are still caring for Whirlybird making sure he gets all of his needed food and nutrients to remain healthy before he gets transferred to his new home. You can follow more of Whirlybird's story by clicking here.
Even though it is against the law to hurt or harm any marine mammal, sadly, Whirlybird is just one of hundreds of marine mammals the Center has admitted in its 36 year history with trauma due to gunshot wounds. Please help spread the word of how important these animals are to the ocean ecosystem and stop the intentional hurting of this majestic animals. If you have any information regarding someone shooting a marine mammal, please report it immediately to the NOAA Law Enforcement line at (831)-647-2127.
Want to help feed Whirlybird? Your donation can help him today!