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Shelby the Harbor Seal’s Vaquita Selfie

Hugh's Aquarium Views Video Number 34

While Harpo the sea lion takes selfies for fun, Shelby the harbor seal has a more important purpose for her selfie. Her purpose is for a porpoise.

I first started training the sea lions at the Aquarium of the Pacific to take selfies using a home made camera pole just for fun. It was an enrichment activity for the sea lions as they loved taking the selfie stick with them as they swam through the water.

For Shelby the harbor seal however I had a different purpose for training her to take a selfie. That purpose was for a porpoise. Specifically it was to highlight the plight of the most endangered porpoise in the world; the Vaquita. There are less than 30 Vaquitas left. Drastic measures are needed to save the “sea panda” of Baja.

Vaquitas and harbor seals are about the same size so I decided to borrow one our education staff’s life size Vaquita cutouts so that Shelby could take a selfie with it. Shelby added scale to the cutout so that folks can get a better idea of the size of this endangered porpoise.

Check out the video of Shelby taking a selfie with a Vaquita. And for more information on how you can help the Vaquita check out our page on Vaquita Conservation.