Video: Sea lion drags young girl into harbor
Posted May 23
A young girl in Canada got yanked into Steveston Harbour in Richmond, British Columbia, over the weekend, and the moment made national news after it was captured on YouTube.
The girl, who was spending time with her family, was feeding the sea lion. It rose up from the water close to her face.
The girl later sat back down on the dock and that’s when the sea lion jumped up and pulled her into the water, ABC News reported.
Student Michael Fujiwara captured the moment and posted the video on YouTube.
"Thank goodness the young lady wasn't hurt, but let it be a warning to everybody: Do not do this," Bob Baziuk, a spokesman for the Steveston Harbour Authority, told ABC News.
Baziuk said the sea lion weighed close to 1,200 pounds.
A man jumped into the water to save the girl. Fujiwara told CBC he didn’t know who the man was. He also said he’s happy to hear that no one was injured in the incident.
"They were pretty shaken up," Fujiwara told CBC. "Her family were just in shock."
Andrew Trites, the director of UBC's Marine Mammal Research Unit, said the sea lion is not to blame for the event.
"My first reaction to the video is just how stupid some people can be to not treat wildlife with proper respect," he said. "This was a male California sea lion. They are huge animals. They are not circus performers. They're not trained to be next to people."
Baziuk told CNN that those who visit the harbor put themselves at risk.
Right now, he said, male sea lions swim through the area looking for food.
"It's not Sea World, it's a place where you buy fish," Baziuk said, according to CNN. "If you feed the animals like this you're asking for trouble.