November 20, 2018 1:00 am

Vancouver Island woman frustrated over lack of help for injured sea lion

WATCH: A Vancouver Island woman is worried help may arrive too late for a sea lion who appears to have a rope around his neck. Kylie Stanton has more.

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A sea lion in Cowichan Bay has been spotted in distress with what appears to be a rope wrapped around its neck.

Mary-Ann Miranda Young got a good look at the animal on Friday while crab fishing nearby.

“It’s been there for a long, long time — dug right into the skin,” Young said.

Young captured the sea lion on video and immediately called around for help.

“Well, I just don’t want him to suffer,” she said.

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On Monday, a Fisheries and Oceans Canada (DFO) patrol boat arrived on scene and appeared to be documenting the animal.

In a statement, DFO said: “We will continue to monitor the animal to determine if its body condition is deteriorating…Any action in response to a marine mammal in distress is evaluated on a case-by-case basis.”

In the past the team has disentangled sea lions by mildly tranquilizing them, just enough to avoid potential drowning. They used that method to save a sea lion in Fanny Bay that had been caught up in a shoelace.

Young is hoping the same steps will be taken in this case — and soon.

“I don’t think he’ll last much longer,” she said. “Get on it, before it’s too late.”

The sea lion is one of hundreds that migrate to the area from California every fall.

© 2018 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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