Stella, Rose and Kitty will become the first sea lions to visit Mote Marine Aquarium. They’re the first three sea lions to be featured in Mote’s “Sea Lions: On the Water’s Edge” exhibit.
The exhibit runs from Dec. 1 through April 28.
For now, read up on a few fast facts about sea lions, courtesy of Mote:
• Sea lions are highly agile on water, thanks in part to their streamlined body and sleek fur. And while they may look clumsy on land, don’t let them fool you: They have no trouble exploring, as demonstrated by sea lions on Año Island, Calif., which climbed a flight of stairs in an old house.
• Sea lions and fur seals have smaller external ears than true seals.
• Pinnipeds — i.e. sea lions, seals, fur seals and walruses — have highly sensitive whiskers that can connect with 10 times the number of nerve fibers as the whiskers of land mammals.
• California sea lions can dive deeper than 880 feet, while other pinnipeds can go even deeper.
• Sea lions are capable of learning complicated behaviors. In fact, some California sea lions have been trained to communicate with humans in a manner similar to the way in which some dolphins have been trained.
Contact Robin Hartill at [email protected].