Hungry sea lion pup rescued after OB adventure

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

SAN DIEGO -– Worried residents called police and a SeaWorld rescue team after spotting a hungry sea lion pup wandering the streets of Ocean Beach early Friday.

Police were called to the 5000 block of Newport Avenue at about 1:20 a.m. after the pup made its way over a beach sea wall and was seen crawling under parked cars. When officers arrived, the tiny pinniped was making its way up an alley toward a parking structure.

"The main concern was that, one, the animal could bite a citizen if in fact it was approached, and then secondly, the animal could theoretically have been hit by a vehicle had a driver not seen it as it was wandering through the streets," said San Diego police Sgt. Salvador Hurtado.

Several residents used a couple of pieces of wooden lattice to create a makeshift pen. They corralled the sea lion on the sidewalk until a SeaWorld rescue crew arrived. Eric Otjen, a member of the SeaWorld rescue team, lives close by. He was able to get the pup into a dog kennel that a woman brought to the scene from her home.

"We're going to take him back to SeaWorld. We'll get him the help he needs, a little bit of fish and stuff, and get him nice and fat and chubby and then he'll go back out into the ocean," Otjen said.