Sea lion dies during veterinary exam

April 30, 2008 at 10:28 PM
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TACOMA, Wash., April 30 (UPI) -- A sea lion died while being examined by Washington veterinarians as they prepared to remove it from the Tacoma zoo, a spokeswoman said.

The 1,454-pound male sea lion, found earlier at a Columbia River dam, died after having breathing complications while waking up from anesthesia Tuesday at Point Defiance Zoo and Aquarium in Tacoma, the Seattle Post-Intelligencer reported.

The sea lion reportedly was part of a group of seven taken from the Bonneville Dam April 24.

It is reported that state officials were allowed to take the sea lions out of the dam after they had little success in previous efforts to reduce their presence in the area. The animals reportedly were eating protected salmon in the dam.

The seven lions were being temporarily kept at the Tacoma zoo for examinations before being transported to other facilities across the nation, the Post-Intelligencer reported.

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