San Diego sea lion pup bunks with sailor for Mother's Day

2015-05-12 12:13
(Michael Duffy via AP)

(Michael Duffy via AP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

San Diego - Mother's Day may have been a bit of a bust for a baby sea lion in San Diego - and a bit of a surprise, too.

Michael Duffy, aged 48, said he was on his 12.5m  Kettenburg boat "Elixir" at the San Diego Yacht Club when he awoke at 02:30 on Sunday to sneezing and snoring.

He thought it might be a friend, crashing from a night out, but couldn't find anyone. Once it got light a few hours later, however, he heard it again.

That's when Duffy saw a  16 kg sea lion pup on another bunk, curled up like a dog on top of his board shorts.

"It was a tiny little guy, and I was kind of shocked, but he was basically asleep," Duffy said, guessing it was a male. "Then he heard me coming, so he kind of looked up a little bit like when a dog is sleeping and you want to wake it up and it doesn't want to wake up."

'Totally bizarre' 

Duffy said the pup was probably looking for his mother but found him instead.

Duffy grabbed his cellphone and took a photo of the pup, who had already jumped down onto the cabin floor.

"You gotta go buddy, go...go, go, go," Duffy said, as he filmed, softly coaxing the baby sea lion back up the stairs, off the boat and into the water.

Duffy, an advertising copywriter, has been sailing since he was 6 years old and has grown up around the marine environment; he'd heard of sea lions getting onto boats, but going down below?

"Totally bizarre," he said, adding: "Sea lions they can be cute, but they can be dangerous. You've got to be careful it's a wild animal."

If the sea lion had been an adult, he would have stayed away. But, he said this pup was very well behaved and left no mess, not even seawater on his shorts.

He said the pup had an orange tag on its flipper and he believed it may have been once rescued after washing onto the shore, before being set free again. The baby sea lion appeared to be healthy and swam fine, and it was seemingly no stranger to humans.

Read more on:    us

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.
NEXT ON NEWS24X publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.