Sea lion pup rescued from inside car at the Dana Landing boat launch

Sea World called to help with rescue

SAN DIEGO - A wayward sea lion pup climbed into someone's vehicle near SeaWorld San Diego early Wednesday.

Officers received a report of the baby seal sighting at Ingraham Street near and West Mission Bay Drive at about 5:15 a.m. A SeaWorld rescue crew was called to the scene.

The driver of the car said he was driving to work when he saw what he thought was a dog on the road.

Mike Belahunt said he pulled over to try and help the creature.

"I didn't know what to do," said Belahunt. "So I just opened the door and got him over there, he ended up just jumping in the car, hung out in the front for a little while and then went to the back and he's just been sitting there for about 20 minutes waiting for the Sea World guys to show up."

The SeaWorld rescue crew told 10News the pup appears to be 8-months old, thin and dehydrated.

10news previously reported that Sea World has rescued more sea lion pups this year compared to the past two years combined. Experts are attributing the spike to what the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration calls an "unusual mortality event."

More than 285 mammals have been rescued by SeaWorld this year, 270 of those have been sea lion pups. The other rescues included seal pups, harbor and elephant seals and other mammals.

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