An abandoned juvenile California sea lion has found its forever home at The Long Island Aquarium.
The 45-pound female pup arrived in Riverhead earlier this month and will remain behind the scenes while she is in quarantine for 30 to 60 days to undergo routine medical tests and basic training, according to the Aquarium’s Facebook page.
“She is so sweet and small, weighing 45 pounds,” the social media announcement stated. “We can already see her playful personality coming through; she loves playing with her toys and is a big fan of ice cubes.”
The baby sea lion was rescued from the shores of La Jolla, California in July. The sea lion, known as No. 1870, was brought to the SeaWorld rescue center in San Diego, where, in consultation with officials from the National Marine Fisheries Service, she was deemed unreleasable.
Aquarium staff launched a GoFundMe page to raise funds to transport the pup via cargo plane to Riverhead. With private donations and help from Sea World San Diego’s Rescue Center, the sea lion made the cross-continental trip last Thursday.
After the quarantine, she’ll join the three existing California sea lions at Long Island Aquarium: Java, Bunker and Nila. The Long Island Aquarium plans to have a naming contest in the coming weeks for its newest addition.
The Long Island Aquarium is located at 431 East Main Street in Riverhead. W