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Bonneville Dam Sea Lions

Each year, an increasing number of California sea lions prey upon endangered salmon species as they return to the Bonneville Dam on the Columbia River in Washington State. The sea lions have gained more than double the average weight for the species and no amount of hazing has effectively dissuaded the sea lions from gorging themselves on these salmon. As a result, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Fisheries Service has authorized the relocation or euthanasia, of sea lions which have been identified as repeat offenders.

Since the spring of 2008, wildlife managers for Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife and Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife have removed a total of 40 California sea lions below Bonneville dam. Ten of these animals were placed in zoos and aquariums across the country and all are in good health.

What Can YOU Do?

IMATA Organizational Members can:

  • Contact IMATA to find out how well the relocated animals did acclimating to veterinary care, and behavioral training programs.
  • Make space in your aquarium for some of these 2011 animals that will need to be relocated.
     

 

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