Alaska SeaLife Center Admits First Stranded Seal of 2015
May 5, 2015

Seward, AK – April 30, 2015– The Alaska SeaLife Center (ASLC) admitted its first stranded marine mammal for the 2015 season. The two-day-old female harbor seal pup was found abandoned on mud flats near Kachemak Drive in Homer, Alaska on April 24.

Staff from ASLC’s Wildlife Response Program were already in the Homer area conducting a volunteer training when the call came in from U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS). Staff were then able to monitor the pup’s condition first-hand. Along with minor injuries, the pup still had her white lanugo coat, indicating she was born prematurely. After searching the area for her mother or other seals, the crew made the decision to bring the pup in. 

The newborn arrived at the Alaska SeaLife Center on April 25 weighing 8.1 kilograms (18 pounds). The pup, named Silky, is currently being fed five times a day with a formula created specifically for seals that contains all of the nutrients and calories needed to help seal pups grow. The pup is currently in stable condition and staff say she is very feisty.

Her feisty nature pairs well with this year’s naming theme: sharks. Staff chose the shark theme in celebration of ASLC’s 2015 Summer of Sharks. Silky is named after the silky shark species, a tropical shark with very smooth skin.

The Alaska SeaLife Center is the only permanent marine rehabilitation center in Alaska, responding to wildlife such as harbor seals, walrus, and sea otters. The Center’s Wildlife Response Program responds to harbor seals with the authorization of NOAA. Once a seal is admitted to the Center, it is closely monitored by the veterinary and animal care staff at ASLC.

According to President and CEO, Dr. Tara Riemer, “The Alaska SeaLife Center has very limited federal funding and no state funding to care for marine mammals, and we rely on donations to keep this program going. We especially thank Shell Exploration and Production and ConocoPhillips Alaska for their generous contributions to the Center in support of wildlife rescue and oil spill response readiness.”

The Alaska SeaLife Center is a private non-profit research institution and visitor attraction, which generates and shares scientific knowledge to promote understanding and stewardship of Alaska’s marine ecosystems.  The Alaska SeaLife Center is an accredited member of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums, and the Alliance of Marine Mammal Parks and Aquariums. For additional information, visit

The Alaska SeaLife Center operates a 24-hour hotline for the public to report stranded marine mammals or birds,and encourages people whohave found a stranded or sick marine animal to avoid touching or approaching the animal.  Call first!  1-888-774-SEAL

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