January 26, 2022
Vancouver, BC. –The Vancouver Aquarium is thrilled to introduce its newest, rescued Northern fur seal
resident Lola. Due to significant vision issues, Lola was deemed non-releasable by the Department of
Fisheries and Oceans (DFO). The Aquarium has been his home since July 2021 and now the public are
encouraged to visit him.
Lola was found in poor condition and rescued off Salt Spring Island on January 21, 2021. Following his
assessment at the Vancouver Aquarium’s Marine Mammal Rescue Centre, he was diagnosed with
bilateral congenital cataracts. Two surgeries were conducted to remove the cataracts and improve his
vision, but unfortunately, he was still deemed non-releasable by DFO.
The good news for Lola is that the Vancouver Aquarium can provide long-term homes for a limited
number of non-releasable marine mammals. Since July 2021, caregivers have been teaching Lola to
perform specific tasks that will aid in his ongoing care, and he has been gradually introduced to 5 other
feisty female Northern fur seals.
Lola currently eats around 2.5 kilograms of herring, capelin and squid and weighs in at 21.0 kilograms.
He still has necessary progress to make. Adult fur seals show dramatic differences in size between males
and females. Once Lola is full size, we can expect him to grow to be 5 times heavier than any of the
Aquarium’s female fur seals.
“We are delighted to see how well Lola has been doing since he was rescued over a year ago and look
forward to seeing his progress continue at the Aquarium.” said Marine Mammal Rescue Centre Manager
The Marine Mammal Rescue Centre is Canada’s only dedicated marine mammal rescue facility and one
of the largest in the world. The Centre has rescued and rehabilitated marine mammals for over 60 years.
The facility allows for on-site rehabilitation of seals, sea lions, sea otters, sea turtles and small cetaceans,
such as harbour porpoises. The Centre also responds to off-site marine mammal emergencies including
disentangling sea lions along the coast.
“We are very proud of our 60-year history rescuing marine mammals along the British Columbia
coastline. This remains a core commitment of the Vancouver Aquarium.” Said Vancouver Aquarium
Executive Director Clint Wright.
Photos and video here.
For more information:
Todd Hauptman, Communications Manager
About Vancouver Aquarium
Since opening in 1956, the Vancouver Aquarium has connected more than 40 million people
from around the world to our oceans and inspired them to take action to address key threats.
Located in Stanley Park, the Vancouver Aquarium is home to hundreds of incredible species.
The Vancouver Aquarium is a fully accredited member of Association of Zoos and Aquariums
(AZA), Alliance of Marine Mammal Parks and Aquariums (AMMPA), Canada’s Accredited Zoos
and Aquariums (CAZA), and Humane Conservation Certified by American Humane.
About Vancouver Aquarium Marine Mammal Rescue Centre
The Vancouver Aquarium Marine Mammal Rescue Centre is a hospital for sick, injured or
orphaned marine mammals. The Rescue Centre rescues stranded marine mammals and
rehabilitates them for release back into their natural habitat. www.mmrpatients.org
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