Marine biologists in San Pedro are trying to nurse several sea lions that have been sickened by algae back to good health.
KTLA’s Mark Mester visited the Marine Mammal Care Center Wednesday, where sea lions are being kept in separate enclosures based on their condition.
The sea lions are suffering from Domoic Acid poisoning, which has sickened hundreds, if not thousands of sea lions along the California coast in recent weeks.
Domoic Acid is a neurotoxin that is naturally produced by harmful algal blooms. The toxin can cause seizures, disorientation, brain damage, and, ultimately, death.
Biologists at the care center are working to heal the creatures so they can return to the wild.
Lauren Palmer of the MMCC said if you spot a sea lion suffering from a seizure in the wild, you should alert the rescue agencies.
“The worst thing you can do” is to approach the creatures, as that “may stimulate them to have full-blown seizures,” Palmer said.
“They’re not aware of their surroundings and what’s going on, so leaving them alone is the most important thing we can do,” Palmer added.