Chessington World of Adventures Resort

A World Ocean Day gift at Chessington World of Adventures

Posted: 25th August, 2023

Chessington World of Adventures Resort welcomed a new arrival on June 8, 2023, which coincidentally happened to be World Oceans Day – introducing Leo the California sea lion.

Leo, meaning ‘lion-hearted’, was born to mum, Carla, and dad, Hugo earlier this summer and is the first baby sea lion to be born at Chessington for over ten years. Hugo joined the raft in early 2022 after leaving Blackpool Zoo to become a successful breeding partner.

California sea lions are known for being strong swimmers and so it’s no surprise that Leo has already taken his first splash into the waters. Now at over two months old, when he’s not playing around with the zoo keepers, he can be seen snuggling up on the shore with mum. He won’t start eating fish until six to nine months old, so up until then he’ll drink from mum about once a day. Leo particularly loves to groom himself on the rockery in the enclosure, and also loves the pool hose which his Keepers use.

Of the six sea lion species in the wild, four of them are currently listed as endangered or near threatened due to overfishing and plastic pollution. Leo is an ambassador for his species to help share the important message on what we can do to try and conserve our oceans.

During Marine Conservation Week, zoo keepers at Chessington raised an incredible £2,300 to go to the SEA LIFE Trust, who work globally to protect the World’s oceans and the amazing marine life that lives within them.


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