By: Mercedes Pliego
In Sausalito California it has been the third year that starving sea lion pups are washing ashore on California’s beaches.
California sea lions are considered a sentinel species, because they’re seen as detectors to the ocean’s health. Which shows that if sea lions are suffering, then it means that something is wrong offshore. However scientists still don’t really know what is causing the sea lions to starve.
The sea lions weighed less than half of what they should, and the pups were showing up to rehab centers extremely early in the year, which was a time when they should have been relaxing on their Channel Island.
Scientists still don’t know what has cause such an alarming and ongoing struggle; they have been aware of known diseases and environmental toxins, which might be expected to affect more than just pups. Some researchers ask themselves if the sea lion’s population has grown so large that the offshore environment can’t sustain itself.