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Sadie
Phoca hispida


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On April 15th, a ringed seal pup (Phoca hispida) was spotted near Sadie Creek, southwest of Kotzebue, Alaska. He was observed moving inland, more then 1½ miles away from the coast. There was no mother in sight. Local residents became concerned for the pup; he was collected and brought to the Fish and Wildlife Service in Selawick, AK. Alaska Airlines donated airfare and cargo space and preparations were made to fly the pup to Anchorage. Members of the Alaska SeaLife Center's (ASLC) rehabilitation department transported the pup from Anchorage to ASLC, where he was named "Sadie." Dr. Natalie Noll examined Sadie and conducted blood work, and took morphometrics (measurements of overall body size). She determined that Sadie was a healthy, 6.7 kg, 7-10 day old, ringed seal. Sadie was placed on a diet of formula consisting of milk matrix (a zoological milk substitute), salmon oil, vitamins and minerals. Sadie was also given antibiotics to fight off any infections he may have previously had or acquired in his travels.

On July 11, 2001 Sadie demonstrated that he had mastered foraging skills and received a final clean bill of health. Prior to release, Sadie was fitted with a satellite telemetry device. This "tag" will monitor dive time, depth, and location. Through satellite communication, research and education staff will be able to follow Sadie through his natural environment. Sadie was flown to Point Krusenstern near Kotzebue, accompanied by ASLC staff members Dr. Natalie Noll and Susan Inglis. After spending three months in the Alaska SeaLife Center's rehabilitation department, Sadie has returned to his native marine waters.

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