Buddy The Blind Sea Lion Now A Resident Of LA Zoo

LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com/AP) — He’s big and he’s loud.

A nearly 700-pound blind California sea lion named Buddy has taken up residence at the Los Angeles Zoo, where his vocalizations can be heard throughout the 133-acre facility.

The zoo said Monday the approximately 10-year-old sea lion is adapting well to his habitat at the Sea Life Cliffs exhibit since arriving in late May.

Unable to hunt or defend himself, the huge seal was malnourished, emaciated and blind when he was rescued at Manhattan Beach in July 2016 and brought to the Marine Mammal Care Center Los Angeles.

He was rehabilitated for 10 months but could not be released due to his injuries and blindness, so the zoo took him in.

“Being from the wild, he came to us without any trained behaviors, and as we work with him we’re learning about him as an individual,” Los Angeles Zoo Senior Animal Keeper Jennifer Kuypers said in a statement. “Buddy is a confident, smart sea lion who is adapting well to his new environment.”

Buddy lives with several harbor seals but the zoo expects more sea lions.

(© Copyright 2017 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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