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Shooting of sea lions in Santa Monica Bay sparks outrage

August 18, 2011 |  5:03 am

Seal Lion

This post has been corrected. See note at the bottom for details.

Officials this week announced a $5,000 reward in the case of several sea lions who washed up wounded by gunshots.

According to Marine Animal Rescue, the latest case occurred Aug. 3 when an adult female sea lion washed ashore on Venice Beach "spurting blood from a hole in her right side."

The organization tried to treat the sea lion, but it was too late.

In February 2009, a wounded sea lion pup was found at Dockweiler Beach.  "At least one bullet penetrated the pup’s spine. He was paralyzed, and in critical condition," the group said in a statement. "The pup had to be euthanized."

Officials said there have been several shootings of sea lions. Marine Animal Rescue and other marine animal organizers  suspect fishermen might be responsible.

"Some anglers feel that seals, sea lions and even pelicans are a threat to their livelihoods and will purposely injure or kill the animals," MAR said.

[For the Record, 6:11 a.m. Aug. 18: An earlier version of this post indicated that an adult female sea lion found at Venice Beach was euthanized. Actually, that sea lion was already dead when discovered; the animal that was euthanized was a pup found at Dockweiler Beach in 2009.]


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Photo: Sea lion found wounded this month in Venice. Credit: Marine Animal Rescue