Even though Officer Roger Pereira has experienced some unusual workdays, he was taken aback by a call that he received on Tuesday morning. Just south of San Francisco, on the congested US-101, the smallest offender was impeding traffic.
He was certain that it had to be a joke or error of some kind. According to Pereira, “I wasn’t certain that there would be an actual sea lion on the freeway.” A witness then adds: “A baby sea lion was on the freeway when we got there.”
A couple Good Samaritans who had stopped their car to assist the young sea lion were watching over the 10-month-old animal. They were watching it closely to make sure it didn’t wander into the lanes of traffic, according to Pereira. “I was in disbelief and could not believe that I was actually looking at a sea lion on such a busy motorway,” the author recalls.
The 30-pound sea lion, who was obviously far from home, was unaware that he was obstructing people’s morning commute. Instead, he appeared to be experiencing the new situation with a sense of youthful amazement.
Pereira then adds: “Even with all the loud noise of vehicles passing by and all the people around him, the sea lion was very calm and curious about what was going on.”
Officer Pereira was forced to make the errant marine animal an arrest, but he decided against using handcuffs. He opened the passenger door of his patrol car after parking it close to the sea lion.
The sea lion voluntarily surrendered. The sea lion leapt into the back seat of the patrol car as soon as the door opened, according to Pereira, “without needing any kind of stimulus.”
Once more, the young sea lion appeared to be completely fascinated by the novel situation. It’s possible that his curiosity was what first got him into trouble.
The sea lion enjoyed the ride, according to Pereira. It did not make any noises or move in an erratically while inside the patrol car. The marine lion behaved himself admirably.
In case the sea lion need immediate treatment, Pereira handed it off at the Peninsula SPCA in the neighbourhood before letting him go with simply a warning.
The sea lion was then sent to The Marine Mammal Rescue Center, where a checkup indicated that, except from some mild undernutrition and a tiny scratch on his flipper, he was in good condition.
Dr. Cara Field, a staff veterinarian at The Marine Mammal Center, told Patch that the youngster probably been separated from his mother too soon and wasn’t nearly ready to forage correctly on his own. Despite being underweight, the sea lion youngster is quite spirited and energetic, so with prompt supportive treatment, we are optimistic that he will fully recover.
The sea lion will hopefully be able to be released back into the wild in the future, as far away from morning traffic as possible.