Last month a California sea lion named Bazingo was reunited with the ocean after a month-long stay at the Marine Mammal Center veterinary hospital  in Sausalito, California.

Photo: Jimmi Johnson – Creativity Center


Bazingo was found near San Luis Obispo the previous month with a badly injured flipper. He was transported to the center’s veterinary facility just across the Golden Gate bridge from San Francisco where the vets found his right rear flipper infected and swollen with seeping wounds.

As sea lions can apparently adapt to life without a rear flipper, the vets decided amputation was the best option. The injured flipper was removed August 7 .

He recuperated quickly, swimming in the hospital’s pool. After a couple of weeks he was eating and doing all of the normal things wild sea lions do.

Released at Point Reyes National Seashore, he dove into the breakers, surfaced a few times and was gone. The vets are confident that Bazingo will have a productive life foraging and mating in the wild.

Learn about the work of the Marine Mammal Center.