Sea lion takes California fisherman for a plunge

April 7, 2015

sea lionA fisherman was posing for a photo with fish he caught in a San Diego bay when a sea lion leaped out of the water, chomped on the fish and dragged the 62-year-old man into bay. [Mercury News]

The sea lion pulled the fisherman by his arm to the bottom of the 20-foot deep Mission Bay around 4 p.m. Sunday. The man was submerged for 15 to 20 seconds before the sea lion let him go and he rose to the surface.

Responders transported the fisherman in an ambulance to a hospital, and the attack left bloodstains on the boat. The man endured no major injuries, though, and reportedly just had cuts on his hands and feet.

The incident caught most people in the area by surprise, but boaters at a San Diego marina say sea lions have been acting aggressively toward humans lately. Sea lions have chased people who are boarding their boats, one boater said.

In California, more than 1,600 starving sea lions have washed up on the shore this year with more than 500 on the Central Coast.

Some scientists blame overpopulation. Historically, it was estimated approximately 40,000 sea lions lived in the waters off California, now that number has swelled to over 300,000.

Another theory is that climate change is to blame. Because of warmer ocean temperatures, dwindling fish populations have forced sea lion mothers to spend more time at sea hunting food while their babies are left behind.


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8 Comments

  1. JMO says:

    I just came back from Hawaii (yes, I am better than you) and the price of gasoline is actually CHEAPER there than here. Never saw that before. It must be the new Global Warming Tax we are paying for gasoline. We should take comfort that, every time we fill our tank, we are doing something to solve the Global Warming problem that causes things like dying baby sea lions.

    (3) 5 Total Votes - 4 up - 1 down
  2. taxpayer says:

    It’s way past time to do away with the Marine Mammal Protection Act. They are causing more damage to the fisheries, and the environment, than all the fishermen in the State of California. So we want to increase the sea lion population for political purposes or do we want to protect the ocean’s delicate ecosystem? It’s time to wake up and realize that protecting these animals is like protecting gophers in a garden.

    (5) 7 Total Votes - 6 up - 1 down
  3. Rambunctious says:

    Jeeez! next time I go fishin I’m packin heat!!!!!

    (7) 9 Total Votes - 8 up - 1 down
  4. ml1999 says:

    I will ask the non-PC question: does sea lion meat taste good?

    Use the funds to help restore other fish stocks that are in trouble. win-win-win

    (10) 14 Total Votes - 12 up - 2 down
  5. Theo P. Neustic says:

    What a shock, once again, some issue is linked to “global warming” or “climate change”. In reality, the 300K number is actually more like 400 k

    (17) 19 Total Votes - 18 up - 1 down
  6. pigsrule says:

    Horrors! A cute funny sea lion takes an adult fisherman to the bottom of the sea? Close your eyes kids.

    Let me see, which reason makes more sense for overpopulation: because we have almost 10 times as many sea lions as we used to because of government protection, or due to baby sea lions being left by the mothers? Hmmm, one of these is logical, while the other is gibberish.

    Give me a break. Cull the herd, folks.

    (21) 31 Total Votes - 26 up - 5 down
  7. Rich in MB says:

    “Some scientists blame overpopulation. Historically, it was estimated approximately 40,000 sea lions lived in the waters off California, now that number has swelled to over 300,000.”

    Yet, we have people that don’t understand how nature works wanting to “save” the sick and dying baby sea lions. Once gain, these people and groups thinking with their Heart rather than their Head are a big part of the problem!

    (22) 34 Total Votes - 28 up - 6 down

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