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Shedd Aquarium takes in 10-week-old orphaned sea otter

The Shedd Aquarium has a new resident just in time for spring—a 10-week-old orphaned sea otter pup.

Pup 719 arrived Jan. 27 at the Shedd from the Monterey Bay Aquarium in California, where she was estimated to be about 4 weeks old, according to a statement from the lakefront aquarium. She was found alone on Jan. 6 on Carmel Beach in Carmel, California. Attempts to find her mother through the pup’s cries were unsuccessful.

“Shedd officials and animal care staff quickly accepted Monterey Bay Aquarium’s call to provide the stranded pup with a permanent home,” according to the Shedd.

The otter, which currently weighs about 11 pounds, is being kept behind the scenes in the Regenstein Sea Otter Nursery. She is receiving care nearly around the clock from a rotating team of six to eight animal care experts.

Pup 719, which refers to the number of otters taken into Monterey Bay’s Sea Otter Program since 1984, is the third pup from the threatened southern sea otter population to find a home at the Shedd.

In December, one of the Shedd’s sea otters, four-year-old Cayucos, died suddenly. Another orphaned sea otter, Luna, made her public debut at the Shedd in December 2014.

Rescued southern sea otter pup 719 (Enhydra lutris nereis) being fed by Shedd Aquarium trainer, Michael Pratt, behind the scenes at the Monterey Bay Aquarium. | @Monterey Bay Aquarium/Tyson Rininger
Rescued southern sea otter pup 719 (Enhydra lutris nereis) being fed by Shedd Aquarium trainer, Michael Pratt, behind the scenes at the Monterey Bay Aquarium. | @Monterey Bay Aquarium/Tyson Rininger