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Statement on stranded seal pup

5 September 2013

It is with great sadness that Zoos Victoria announces the passing of a stranded seal pup that came into our care today.

Staff from Melbourne Zoo were called to rescue the young pup after it begun to display unusual behaviour, having beached itself on Aspendale Beach for at least the last 2 days.

The seal is thought to be a yearling pup that was being weaned from its mother, a particularly risky time for fur seals.

The yearling pup was brought into Melbourne Zoo at around 1pm today and received a preliminary vet health check at 2:30pm. The seal passed away suddenly before vets could complete the health check.

Our Vet and Keeper teams are deeply saddened by this loss and will be performing a post-mortem to look for the cause of death.

During the warmer months, seals will come ashore for a variety of reasons particularly as pups are weaned and become independent from their mothers for the first time.

If you find a stranded or distressed seal please keep your distance and report it to the Department  of Environment and Primary Industries Customer Service Centre on 136 186.