This Stuart Little is not to be confused with the cunning mouse character created by children’s author, E.B. White. No, this Stuart Little is a juvenile harp seal that was recently rescued on a Maryland beach and has since been living his best life at his new digs at the Baltimore National Aquarium.
On May 2, Stuart Little, 43-inches long and 48 pounds, was rescued after someone spotted the young seal eating sand, a sign that the mammal may be dehydrated and under distress. According to the aquarium, sand and rocks can cause major damage to the seal’s digestive system, the Bay Times and Record Observer reported.
The Baltimore Aquarium worked in coordination with Ocean City Beach Patrol and Ocean City Police to rescue the little guy, who is now being cared for by the team at the aquarium’s Animal and Care rescue center, according to People magazine.
”Harp seals typically eat ice for hydration during periods when they don’t have access to food,” Director of National Aquarium Animal Rescue Jennifer Dittmar said in a press release. “When they move south into areas where there isn’t ice, they maintain this behavior and can eat whatever is around them- often sand and rocks. This behavior can also be a stress response.”
Members of the rescue team are treating him for ”internal parasites,” and giving him great care. Aquarium officials say Stuart Little is doing very well and is eating about ten pounds of fish a day and recently gained full-time access at the pool.
In February, the aquarium rescued another seal they named Eloise, who was one month old at the time. Aquarium officials said the seal appeared malnourished with a number of lacerations on her neck, People magazine reported. Eloise was eating from an oral feeding tube when she first arrived but is now able to eat more than eight pounds of food daily, which is helping her gain weight. Her new weight is a robust 35 pounds, aquarium officials said.
Here’s hoping Eloise and Stuart continue to thrive!