Sea Lion Pup Debuts at the Smithsonian’s National Zoo

Visitors to the Smithsonian’s National Zoo can view 2-month-old female sea lion Catalina making a splash on American Trail. Born June 26, Catalina is the first sea lion pup born at the Zoo in 32 years. Since Aug. 22, she has been slowly acclimating to the exhibit and exploring alongside 11-year-old mother Calli. The Zoo received a recommendation to breed Calli and the pup’s father, 8-year-old Jetty, from the Association of Zoos and Aquariums’ Species Survival Plan. Calli has introduced the pup to all members of the colony, including two unrelated females named Summer and Sidney. Native to the West Coast of North America, California sea lions range from Baja, Mexico, to Vancouver Island, British Columbia. The International Union for Conservation of Nature classifies them as a species of least concern.

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Photo: Chelsea Grubb, Smithsonian’s National Zoo