Sacto 9-1-1
October 7, 2010
Sea lion wounded on Sacramento River due surgery

By Cathy Locke
clocke@sacbee.com

MC_SEALION.13[1].JPGSgt. Nevis, a sea lion allegedly shot in the head by a fisherman on the Sacramento River last November, is scheduled to undergo reconstructive surgery in Vallejo on Friday. (Photo at left is of Sgt. Nevis at his Six Flags Discovery Kingdom debut.)

The surgery to repair damage to the sea lion's muzzle will be performed Dr. Praful Ramenini, a specialist in human reconstructive surgery, and veterinarians Bill Van Bonn of the Marine Mammal Center in Sausalito and Diana Procter of Six Flags Discovery Kingdom in Vallejo.

Because Sgt. Nevis' injuries prevent him from diving deeply to forage and fears that, if released to the ocean, he would return to areas where might be shot again, veterinarians at the Marine Mammal Center found a home for him at Six Flags.

The surgery won't make it possible for the sea lion to return to the wild, but veterinarians hope it will improve his quality of life

Van Bonn said this is the first time such a procedure had been attempted on a sea lion.

"Currently, he can dive," Van Bonn said, "but he prefers not to because his nose fills up with water. We are very, very hopeful that by sealing up the holes and allowing him to close off his nose, he will be more comfortable."

Van Bonn said Ramenini will perform the surgery to reconstruct the soft tissue.

"The prognosis is cautiously optimistic," Van Bonn said.

The 650-pound adult male California sea lion was nicknamed Sgt. Nevis after Yolo County animal control Officer Sgt. Michael Nevis who helped the Marine Mammal Center rescue him Dec. 5.

The man accused of shooting the sea lion, Larry Allen Legans, 44, of North Highlands, has pleaded not guilty to a single charge of animal cruelty in Sutter Superior Court. His is scheduled for trial Oct. 19.

Jim Oswald, spokesman for the Marine Mammal Center, said that of the 1,074 marine mammals the center rescued last year, 18 were victims of gunshot wounds. Oswald said he hopes the story of Sgt. Nevis will make people pause to consider the impacts of their actions on wildlife.

Call The Bee's Cathy Locke, (916) 321-5287.

On October 14, The Sacramento Bee will temporarily remove commenting from sacbee.com. While we design the upgrade, we encourage you to tell us what you like and don't like about commenting on sacbee.com and other websites. We've heard from hundreds of you already and we're listening. Please continue to add your thoughts and questions here. We also encourage you to write Letters to the Editor on this and other topics.



About Sacto 9-1-1

Sacto 9-1-1 is a blog on crime and emergency services news in the Sacramento region.

Send feedback on Sacto 9-1-1 to Assistant Metro Editor Anthony Sorci at asorci@sacbee.com

Subscribe to Breaking News Alerts

FOLLOW US | Get more from sacbee.com | Follow us on Twitter | Become a fan on Facebook | Watch Bee news, lifestyle videos | View our mobile versions | e-edition: Print edition online | What our bloggers are saying

Sacto 9-1-1 Q&A

Bee reporters answer questions about area crime news, trends and other issues. QUESTION: A couple of years ago, a Sacramento tax attorney named Roni Deutch was the target of an investigation by the California Department of Justice. She was accused of bilking clients out of millions and defying a court (Read More)

More Questions and Answers
See all the crime Q&As
Submit your question

April 2014

Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat
    1 2 3 4 5
6 7 8 9 10 11 12
13 14 15 16 17 18 19
20 21 22 23 24 25 26
27 28 29 30      

Monthly Archives


Kim Minugh on Twitter

Follow "Kim_Minugh" on Twitter

Local Agencies on Twitter

Categories