SUNDAY, 3:49 PM: An update today from Robin Lindsey of Seal Sitters Marine Stranding Network:
We are now up to 10 confirmed shot dead California sea lions in King and Kitsap counties for the period from September to end of November.
On Friday the 30th, Seal Sitters MMSN responded to a report by Seattle Parks employee Marco of a very decomposed California sea lion carcass washed up at Don Armeni boat launch. This was the same animal that was wedged under the Water Taxi dock the day before, which we marked with bio paint for identification and pushed out into the current. Through photo comparison, we were able to verify that this was the same animal reported along the downtown Seattle waterfront some time ago which has been inaccessible. Thanks to Parks and Seal Sitters’ first responders, the carcass was secured until necropsy options could be weighed.
Because of delays getting EPA permits required for towing/sinking, the Marine Mammal Stranding Network is unable to do necropsies until a permit is secured because of disposal issues. That is, unless we have options for burial/disposal on land. Read more about those challenges on my blubberblog post here.
Thanks to the efforts of Carol Baker and her many Seattle Parks/SW employees who lent a hand and provided removal services, we were able to do a limited necropsy onsite of this estimated 600 lb animal. X-rays of the head, done by a local veterinary lab, confirmed that the sea lion had indeed been shot.
There are 6 other reported dead sea lions in King/Kitsap who have not been necropsied, bringing the total of dead sea lions to 16. Additionally, there are several other dead animals in neighboring counties. Blubberblog.org provides the absolute latest updates regarding numbers and any new information.
MONDAY UPDATE: SS also wants you to know that “The Marine Mammal Stranding Network is gathering data from those counties and that information will be shared when possible.”