[MARMAM] Gulf Islands Harbor Seal rescue update

Phocid at aol.com Phocid at aol.com
Wed Sep 12 22:19:53 PDT 2007

Gulf Islands Harbor Seal rescue update.

Island Wildlife Natural Care Centre on Salt Spring Island, BC, a small 
wildlife and marine mammal rescue and rehabilitation centre, is experiencing high 
numbers of Harbor Seal pups in need of intervention. Island Wildlife is 1 of 
only 2 facilities permitted to conduct seal rescue and rehabilitation in Canada.

Since June of this year, Island Wildlife has rescued 98 orphaned and injured 
seal pups. 35 pups have since been released and 50 are still on site in 
rehabilitation. The 11 year old facility consists of 24 isolation tubs and 7 fresh 
water pools ranging in size from 8 foot diameter to 18 foot. 

July brought the heaviest influx of animals totaling 65 for the month.   June 
and July also brought a record number of prematurely born pups (indicated by 
full lanugo coats), totaling 30.

Healthy birth weight in this region is 10 to 11 kg. The average weight for 
the rescued pups has been 7.2 kg. The lightest surviving pup was 4.5 kg.

The centre’s rescue area covers the Northern and Southern Gulf Islands as 
well as the coast of Vancouver Island from north of Campbell River, down south to 
Victoria and and back up the southwest coast to Tofino. 

65% of this years rescues took place in the Gulf Islands. 30% from Vancouver 
Island and 5% from misc. mainland locals such as the Jervis Inlet and Stewart, 
BC, 1,600 km. away. 

Rescues are executed through a well developed network of volunteers, drivers, 
pilots (helicopter and seaplane) and existing ferry routes.

The husbandry and medical care is provided by 4 staff members and 9 onsite 
interns. The seal team is headed up by Marielle Bonnet.

Jeff Lederman
Island Wildlife Natural Care Centre
322 Langs Road, Salt Spring Island, BC V8K1N3
iwncc at aol.com

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