San Diego

SeaWorld Tracking Trash-Tangled Sea Lions at La Jolla Cove

SeaWorld is devising a plan to help several Sea Lions tangled in fishing line at La Jolla Cove.

Right now, about 5 sea lions with fishing lines, ropes or other plastic tangled around their necks are being tracked, but inclement weather and other environmental issues are making them difficult to rescue, according to the staff.

Staff members say the rain makes the cliffs more slippery than usual. They’re also dealing with rough seas.

"We currently are monitory multiple animals off the coast of La Jolla and with the storms, it’s been a little bit difficult to rescue these animals,” SeaWorld rescue team member Jody Westberg said. "These entanglements are life-threatening. If we do not intervene these animals will perish. They will not make it."

SeaWorld says it also is hesitant to try and lure the sea lions with food because they don’t want the animals to approach humans looking for food, or worse yet, the public to copy them and feed the sea lions.

Pictures of one distressed sea lion show the fishing line wrapped so tightly around its neck that it’s starting to cut the sea lion’s skin.

Sea lions aren’t the only wildlife impacted by the trash us humans leave behind, and a man who makes his living underwater says the problem is getting worse.

“As a guy who makes his living in the water, I try to educate people on the importance of the human race needs to stop using the ocean as its toilet. The ocean is the lungs of the planet,” scuba instructor Rod Watkins said.

According to SeaWorld, 80 percent of ocean pollution comes from land.

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