After finding refuge in the Monterey Bay Aquarium’s pool to give birth, an otter mom and her new pup have gone back into the wild.
The California aquarium has posted new photos of the little family on its Facebook page after the wild sea otter’s three-day stay at the facility. The aquarium kept the public updated on the otter since it arrived, posting on Sunday that a pregnant wild sea otter had taken shelter in its Great Tide Pool, which is a body of sheltered water adjacent to the aquarium and connected to the bay. The otter had been escaping rough seas that were caused by storms, reports the LA Times.
According to the aquarium, their sea otter researchers have been watching wild otters for years and had never seen a birth so up close. They filmed the experience and posted it online. The animals will now head to the sea, where the otter mom will teach her pup “how to dive, collect food and other skills needed for life in the wild”.
The aquarium notes that “not so long ago, sea otters were hunted nearly to extinction for their fur – but today, the sea otter population in Monterey Bay has rebounded thanks to legislative protection”.
Read more: Orphaned sea otter finds a home in Chicago