Tuesday, February 20, 2018 7:45 am Last modified: 2:25 am

New Sea Lions, Freddie and Rose, Arrive at Coral World Ocean Park

Rose the sea lion comes to live at Coral World Ocean Park

Coral World Ocean Park announces the arrival of two new sea lions.  Freddie, a 620 lbs., 6-year-old male, and Rose, a petite 250 lbs., 14-year-old female, traveled on their own private charter plane with three trainers and a veterinarian to ensure their comfort and safety.  They arrived from Florida at Cyril E. King Airport on March 24, and they are adjusting well to their new home.

Both Freddie and Rose were born in human care and have been engaged in educational presentations for thousands of people each year.  Lee Kellar, a curator at Coral World, said, “Modern zoos and aquariums frequently move animals among facilities to ensure balanced social structures and to manage the animals as a larger population.” 

The sea lions will undergo veterinary and behavioral observation for at least one month in keeping with Coral World policy before being introduced to the current group of sea lions at Coral World. 

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 “Coral World’s goal for the sea lions and for all the animals and activities at the park is to educate guests about the marine ecosystem.  We want everyone to understand that there is only one world ocean to which humans are inextricably connected. When our guests interact with animals, they learn to appreciate the importance of the marine ecosystem,” said Kellar.

Coral World is accredited by the Alliance of Marine Mammal Parks and Aquariums, which emphasizes education.

Coral World trainers spent several weeks with the new sea lions at their Florida home prior to their arrival on St. Thomas.  While Freddie and Rose will enter Coral World programs in the future, they need additional time to learn the complex interactions that are part of these programs compared to their previous activities.

Assistant Curator Scott Hjerling said, “Freddie and Rose are well-trained, but they aren’t currently trained for the type of things that our boys do.  Coral World sea lions participate in unique and high-level interactive programs.  In addition to the programs in which the public participates, the sea lions voluntarily engage in their own veterinary and medical care.  The next few months are going to be very exciting for the staff and all of the sea lions.”

The public is encouraged to visit Coral World’s Web site (www.coralworldvi.com) to get the latest updates on when Freddie and Rose will begin educational programs at the park.

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  1. Anonymous Reply

    Absolutely appalling that Coral World is still continuing its perpetuation of keeping sea lions in captivity and encouraging human interaction programs with them in the name of entertainment and GREED.
    Have they learned Nothing? Marine Mammals do not belong confined 24/7 365 for their lifetime in dismal, sterile, captivity, in small tanks, only to be trotted out several times a day and fed dead fish to convince them to perform and be made to swim with people.

    Read “The Case Against Marine Mammals In Captivity by the Humane Society International and the World Society for the Protection of Animals:

    “The Humane Society International and the World Society for the Protection of Animals have stated that they believe that “the entire captive experience for marine mammals is so sterile and contrary to even the most basic elements of compassion and humanity that it should be rejected outright.”

    Please, boycott Coral World.

  2. Anonymous Reply

    Acquired for profit, not “education”.

  3. Anonymous Reply

    Is this a breeding pair? 🙁
    Please do not support the cruelty of captivity!

    Lest we forget!

    On Mar 27, 2016, at 7:54 PM, Alana Mawson wrote:

    I was saddened to read of Franco, the Sea Lion’s death but by no means surprised. While Mr. Keller,
    Coral Worlds curator, says they live longer in captivity, and only 12 – 18 years in the wild, he’s mistaken. They can live up to 30 years in the wild according to National Geographic.

    The unfortunate fact is that marine mammals do not die of old age in captivity nor do they die from a “scuffle.” Aggression is often the result of the tight confines the marine mammals are kept in captivity in places such as Coral World and in which the aggressed upon individual has no means of escape.

    In the wild there’s a hierarchy that is upheld as well as places to retreat.

    In captivity, when one Sea Lion is praised over another and rewarded for his unnatural performance and behavior, while food is withheld from another one that hasn’t performed to the trainer’s liking, aggressive behavior is the result as is death of one.
    This is fact. I’d be very interested in the findings of the necropsy report.

    Was poor Franco the one with all the rotted out teeth? 80-90% of all bacterial infections in mammals come from their mouth. This is how most cetaceans die as well. That and poor water quality from all the bacteria that enters their mucous membrane causing systemic and systematic infections.

    When you have the ongoing issues with water quality that exists in Water Bay which is regularly tested as being unacceptable for swimming due to high levels of enterococci bacteria, one has to wonder what kind of effects that has to have on the Sea Lions having that quality of water pumped into their small fiberglass tank. I won’t even get into how very unacceptable it would be for dolphins being in that bay 24/7/365.

    While I mourn this animal’s death, he is free, at last.
    Marine mammals do not die of old age in captivity. They suffer tragic, horrific and horrendous deaths. Never be satisfied until there are no more marine mammals, whether they be Orcas, Dolphins, Beluga Whales or Sea Lions in cruel, sterile, stressful captivity on exhibit for the sake of greed and profit. Don’t support these places whether they be SeaWorld or Coral World.

    Alana Mawson
    St. Thomas, VI

    P.S. I wrote the first reply as anonymous as not used to the new Source reply site.

  4. Alana Mawson Reply

    “Assistant Curator Scott Hjerling said, “Freddie and Rose are well-trained, but they aren’t currently trained for the type of things that our boys do. [b]Coral World sea lions participate in unique and high-level interactive programs. In addition to the programs in which the public participates, the sea lions voluntarily engage in their own veterinary and medical care[/b]

    In other words, they’re FORCED to participate in high level, stressful situations, encounters and interactions just so Coral World can make money off of marine mammal slavery.

  5. Anonymous Reply

    Please boycott this institutionalized animal abuse .
    It will only stop when people stop buying tickets .

  6. Anonymous Reply

    I don’t want to be anonymous. I signed the above statement as Anne Marie Porter .

  7. Anonymous Reply

    I am so excited coral world is growing their family. They really do an amazing job taking care of their animals.

    • Alana Mawson Reply

      I hope you’d enjoy living in captivity, being deprived of your freedom in order for someone to profit from your forced incarceration while being forced to perform for the entertainment of ignorant and unenlightened humans.

  8. Anonymous Reply

    I cannot wait to meet them. This is so exciting! What an amazing addition to St. Thomas!

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