I have determined in the past two days that the staff and volunteers at PMMC must be the most physically fit people…ever. This morning when I woke up, I felt like I had not only aged 60 years but I also felt like I had been competing in a CrossFit competition for the past few days! Needless to say, my body was pretty sore from all of the lifting. After a much needed morning stretch, I was ready to get back to work!
By now I am feeling like I have really grasped the daily routine and tasks at PMMC. First thing in the morning, all of the animals who slept inside need to be moved back outside for the day and the pens that they were sleeping in need to be cleaned. The nursery pups all need to be tube fed while the rest of the pens receive their breakfast as well. After the 120+ animals are fed, dishes are washed and outdoor pens are cleaned, we start fish prep for the next feed (since all animals received 3 or 4 feeds a day)! It really is a constant cycle of cleaning pens, prepping meals, and feeding animals.
Today, about 3 or 4 new California sea lions were admitted. All were very malnourished, but one of them had also ingested a hook with fishing line still attached to it. Due to the severity of this case, this animal had surgical needs. The closest facility with the equipment required to undertake this case was Sea World San Diego. This animal was transferred to Sea World where surgery would be performed to remove the hook and fishing line that it had swallowed.
One of the things that has really become apparent to me out here is the collaboration and assistance of multiple facilities working towards the same cause. During such an unfortunate unusual mortality event, it is uplifting to see facilities from not only California, but the nation as a whole working together and supporting each other. The number of sea lions admitted daily at PMMC alone is growing and the total number of patients here for rehabilitation is overwhelming. The staff and volunteers at PMMC are some of the most dedicated, hardworking people I have met and these animals are so lucky to be in such great hands. Everyone has been beyond welcoming to me and I feel honored to be working alongside them all this week.
Stevi Bramich | September 21st, 2017