This California Aquarium Wants Your Help Naming Its New Adorable Sea Otter Pup

·2 min read
An otter pup from The Aquarium of the Pacific
An otter pup from The Aquarium of the Pacific

Robin Riggs/Courtesy of The Aquarium of the Pacific

It's time for the internet to once again decide the name of a baby animal.

The Aquarium of the Pacific in Long Beach, Calif., is calling on the public for help in naming its newest sea otter pup. The animal's care team is in charge of selecting the winning name — and perhaps the name will even reflect the animal's unique path to the aquarium.

For a chance to name the otter pup, patrons must join the aquarium's virtual adoption program and donate $100 or more by Sept. 30. Then, they will have the opportunity to submit their name suggestions for the pup. The person who comes up with the winning name will be invited to the aquarium for an otter feeding and training session, perhaps with the pup himself.

The otter pup had a somewhat unconventional way of making it to the aquarium; it was found on April 12 alone on the shores of Carmel-by-the-Sea, Calif. Experts determined that he was about three weeks old when he was stranded without his mother on the California shore.

After his rescue, the pup was transported to the  Monterey Bay Aquarium, where staff attempted to pair him with a surrogate mother. The aquarium hoped to return him to the wild but the pairing wasn't successful, and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service determined that the pup could not be released back into the wild.

The otter is now at the Aquarium of the Pacific, in a behind-the-scenes pool with Chloe, the aquarium's resident adult sea otter. And so far, everything seems to be going well.

"Chloe and the pup are socializing well together and have formed a close bond," Brett Long, the aquarium's curator of mammals and birds, said in a statement.

While guests may not get to see the aforementioned nameless pup, the aquarium is home to plenty of other animals that are also up for "adoption," like sea turtles, penguins, and sharks. Reservations are required to visit the aquarium and general admission starts at $36.95 for adults.

For more information on how to visit, check out the aquarium's website.

Cailey Rizzo is a contributing writer for Travel + Leisure, currently based in Brooklyn. You can find her on Twitter, Instagram, or at caileyrizzo.com.