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Theros, First Harbor Seal Pup of 2012

Theros, the first harbor seal pup rescued by the Center in 2012, goes home on Mother's Day!

May 13, 2012

Three months of care, many fish milkshakes and a "fish school" graduation later, harbor seal pup "Theros" was given the all clear to return to the wild on Mother's Day earlier this month. Theros, along with Faith, our first elephant seal pup rescued in 2012, were rescued at the start of pupping season in February after being spotted alone without their moms on the beach. Together they headed out to the big blue ocean at Point Reyes National Seashore on Mothering Sunday, May 13, 2012! Theros, sporting a little hat tag so that scientists can keep track of his travels, received a surprise ocean greeting from another pinniped! Watch our video above to see Theros return to his ocean home!

Theros the Harbor Seal, shortly after his arrival at the Center.
© The Marine Mammal Center

March 7, 2012

Theros is doing well, enjoying fish--sicles! He will now spend day and night outside with an animal carrier and a heating pad as protection from inclement weather. Veterinary crews report that he is tubing well and enjoying swimming and diving in his pool. His teeth are emerging as well!

February 24, 2012

Veterinary technician, Lauren Campbell, carefully inserts a feeding tube into Theros' mouth.
© Dina Warren - The Marine Mammal Center

Meet "Theros," this year's first Pacific harbor seal pup patient! Theros was rescued by volunteers from The Marine Mammal Center's San Luis Obispo operations, near a highly traveled trail at Los Osos Bayward Park Beach in San Luis Obispo, County on February 20, 2012. A concerned beachgoer spotted the white-coated seal (known as a lanugo coat meaning he's only a few days old) and with his umbilical cord still attached. He was all alone, covered in dirt and mud, and with no seal mom in sight. Volunteers brought Theros (named after the beachgoer who called in the rescue) back to the Center's triage facility in Morro Bay where he spent the next day receiving emergency care and being stabilized so that he could be transfered to the main intensive care unit in Sausalito.

"Theros appeared to be bright, alert, responsive and vocal when we did the admit exam," said Lauren Campbell, a veterinary technician at the Center. "It was encouraging to observe him settle down quietly after his tube-feeding of electrolytes and harbor seal formula; next steps will be to get him to full strength formula and get him adjusted to his new surroundings."

It's hard to know exactly why this newly born pup was alone on a beach, but, it's certain that Theros will at least have a fighting chance at survival thanks to the concerned beachgoer who called The Marine Mammal Center.

Now is the time that harbor seal and elephant seal pups can be seen on many beaches along the California coast. The Center reminds beachgoers to "Leave Seals Be" and call its rescue line to report sick, injured or abandoned pups. Trained rescuers can then assess how best to help these animals, which may include putting them on watch to see if mom is just around the corner, if they are in good body condition and health - moving the pup to a safer location away from people and dogs, or mounting an immediate rescue and providing medical care at the hospital. 


Rescue Line Phone Numbers by Region:

(415) 289-SEAL - For the Anchor Bay and Fort Bragg region (including Sonoma and Mendocino coastlines, including Jenner, the Sea Ranch and MacKerricher areas)

(805) 771-8300 - For the Morro Bay and San Luis Obispo region (including southern Big Sur, Moonstone Drive in Cambria and Shell Beach areas)

(831) 633-6298 - For the Monterey Bay region (including San Lorenzo River, Pebble Beach, and northern Big Sur areas)


Learn about The Marine Mammal Center's Leave Seals Be campaign

Learn more about harbor seals

Learn how you can support The Marine Mammal Center

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