Alaska SeaLife Center rescues abandoned harbor seal in Kenai

a harbor seal
A premature harbor seal was rescued in early May after it was found abandoned in Kenai. (Courtesy Alaska SeaLife Center)

The Alaska SeaLife Center in Seward admitted a premature harbor seal pup for treatment after it was found abandoned May 9 near a fish processing facility in Kenai. The pup’s coat was white, an indicator of prematurity. Rescuers determined there was no mother on site and that the pup would not survive without intervention.

The SeaLife Center says its initial veterinary examination revealed the pup had a low body temperature, abnormal bloodwork and was malnourished. The center is currently providing treatment and examination to further determine the severity of the pup’s condition. According to the center, premature harbor seal pups have about a 50% chance of survival after being admitted to a wildlife response program.

The pup is the second premature harbor seal patient brought to the SeaLife Center this season. In April, a pup found in Nikiski was admitted to the center but died within 48 hours. A necropsy revealed its organs were not fully developed.

The pup found in Kenai is currently in serious condition. The SeaLife Center will continue to share updates regarding the pup’s condition on their Facebook and Instagram pages.

If you find an injured or stranded marine animal in Alaska, you can call the 24/7 Stranded Marine Animal Hotline by dialing 1-888-774-SEAL.

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