In British Columbia, a sea lion grabbed a little girl and dragged her into the water. A cellphone video taken by Vancouver resident, Michael Fujiwara, captured the scary moment on Saturday as the child was grabbed by her dress into the harbor. According to CNN, the terrifying situation occurred at Steveston Fisherman’s Wharf in Richmond, British Columbia.
The sea lion quietly sticks its head in and out of the water as tourists try to encourage the animal to swim towards them – all the while they were allegedly throwing bits of food to encourage the animal to come closer. The video than shows a man offering his hand out – seemingly to tempt the sea lion to come even closer. Suddenly the animal jumps up and then back into the water, but gets dangerously close to a little girl peeking and smiling over the harbor. When the child sits down on the edge of the harbor wall, the animal pops up, grabs a hold of her dress – pulling her into the water while the crowd screams in horror.
“Oh my God!” can be heard from the shocked crowd.
In an instant, however a fully clothed man dives into the water and grabs the child holding her while the two swim back to the safety of the dock. The child’s parents quickly usher their child away. In an interview with CBC News, Fujiwara stated the family was in shock and blames tourists for feeding the sea lion bread crumbs to attract it to the crowd.
“It initially jumped up to the girl to read her, I guess. And then it came back up a second time, but this time grabbing the girl by the waist and dragging her down into the water,” Fujiwara stated.
Robert Kiesman, chair person of the Steveston Harbour Authority, said there are multiple signs posted at the popular tourist destination warning people not to feed the sea mammals that frequent the area; warning there is a maximum fine of $100,000 for disturbing a marine animal.
“You wouldn’t go up to a grizzly bear in the bush and hand him a ham sandwich, so you shouldn’t be handing a thousand-pound wild mammal in the water slices of bread,” Kiesman said. “And you certainly shouldn’t be letting your little girl sit on the edge of the dock with her dress hanging down after the sea lion has already snapped at her once. Just totally reckless behaviour.”
Andrew Trites, director of UBC’s Marine Mammal Research Unit, said the animal wasn’t to blame for its behaviour in the video.
What fools these “mortals be.” Photos and video via You Tube by Michael Fujiwara.
Follow the National Pet Rescue on Facebook.
Check out the video. What do you think?