May 16, 2011
The Aquarium of the Pacific is mourning the passing of Odin, one of its most beloved California sea lions. Odin passed away Sunday afternoon moments after a sudden onset of tremors. Prior to this, Odin’s behavior had been normal. This came as a shock as Odin had shown no signs of illness or trauma, had been eating well, and his prior physical exams were normal. The Aquarium is conducting further medical investigations into this.
Before arriving to the Aquarium, Odin had been found stranded and malnourished as a pup in 2006 on Zuma Beach in California and was deemed un-releasable to the wild because he was completely blind and could not hunt for food. “When he joined our mammals in his new home, he was quickly adopted by our other sea lions who accompanied him around the exhibit for the first time. After that, he could glide around the exhibit on his own,” said Perry Hampton, Aquarium of the Pacific vice president of animal husbandry.
Odin was named after a Norse mythological character who had given up an eye to drink from the fountain of wisdom. “He was one of our smartest animals. Although he was blind and rescued from the wild, he would often learn things faster than other sea lions with full vision,” said Hampton. The male sea lion had been a favorite among staff and visitors who were inspired by Odin. “He will be greatly missed,” said Hampton.