Vancouver Aquarium welcomes Steller sea lion pup


First-time mother, Rogue, gives birth to male pup

Rogue and Natoa (Image courtesy of Vancouver Aquarium)

Rogue and Natoa (Image courtesy of Vancouver Aquarium)

The Vancouver Aquarium announced that Rogue, a Steller sea lion, gave birth to her first pup, a male named Natoa. Named after a rookery on Natoa Island in Alaska, the sea lion pup, Natoa, will live in the Seal Cove at the aquarium, where guests can come and see him.

"The sea lion pup, recently born at the Vancouver Aquarium, is an important new addition to a small global population of this species in human care. The Marine Mammal Taxon Advisory Group (MM TAG) of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) oversees the program," said Mackenzie Neale, Vancouver Aquarium animal care director, in an organizational release.1

"This program provides scientifically-grounded and conservation-focused advice to support and further ensure a genetically diverse and sustainable global population for years to come." she continued.

According to the release,1 for almost 30 years, the Vancouver Aquarium actively participated in a critically acclaimed long-term study. The study, conducted by a consortium of universities, investigates the decline and disappearance of up to 75% of wild sea lions in some regions of Alaska. The decline in sea lions has caused them to be listed as “threatened” under the United States Endangered Species Act.

"The Vancouver Aquarium has played an instrumental role in Steller sea lion research along the Pacific Coast of North America. Without the ongoing work and contribution of the Aquarium, many important discoveries about why sea lions are endangered in Alaska would not have been made — and many new scientific techniques used in the field would not have been developed or validated," said Andrew Trites, UBC marine mammal research unit director.

The duo is currently doing well with Rogue under the supervision of the = marine mammal and veterinary teams in a private birthing and nursing facilities at the aquarium.


Steller Sea Lion, Rogue, Gives Birth to Healthy Pup at Vancouver Aquarium. News release. Vancouver Aquarium. September 9, 2022. Accessed September 9, 2022.

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