The Seattle Aquarium is tremendously fortunate to have an amazing pool of dedicated volunteers—including roughly 150 Youth Ocean Advocates (YOAs) who share their passion by educating Aquarium visitors, leading beach cleanups, participating in tree-planting events, raising money for organizations working on behalf of the marine environment, and more.
In honor of World Oceans Day, we’re happy to share a guest blog written by YOA Aviv Pinker, who shares his expertise on salmon. Take it away, Aviv!
On Thursday, April 26th, male harbor seal "Q" was transported to the Point Defiance Zoo and Aquarium (PDZA), joining four female harbor seals. Later that afternoon, Barney met a new friend, 7 year old female "Siku" (pronounced see-koo) from PDZA.
Harbor seals are the most abundant marine mammal living in Puget Sound and it’s almost impossible to tell a male from a female just by looking at them. The two male harbor seals at the aquarium usually weigh the most during the winter and lose some weight in the summer as the water temperature increases.
Male Northern fur seals can weigh 5-6 times as much as their female counterparts! A female may only gain and lose 10-20 pounds throughout the year, while adult males can gain and lose over 250 pounds in one year!
Many adult marine mammals gain and lose weight throughout the year depending on the water temperature, food availability and behavioral changes associated with breeding seasons. Here at the Seattle Aquarium we weigh our marine mammals at least twice a month in order to monitor their health.
Last week, I spent some time in Louisiana bayou country as part of a group from the New York State Marine Educators Association (NYSMEA) to learn about coastline restoration after the BP Deep Horizon oil spill in 2010, as well as after hurricanes Katrina and Rita in 2005. This was a very special opportunity to learn about Gulf Coast ecosystems and associated wetland restoration projects.
Today the Seattle Aquarium along with Christie Johnson from KING 5 News announced the winning name of Aniak's new sea otter pup. With over 15,000 votes, the winning name is Sekiu! Thank you to everyone who voted.