Meet the newest additions to the Vancouver Aquarium sea otter family — two rescued young pups who were found without their mothers off the coast of Alaska earlier this year. We’re providing the non-releasable pups with long-term care.

    These two energetic pups are in need of names and you’re invited to help us choose them! There are three options each for the male and female sea otters. Click on your favourite to vote (two entries allowed per day). Voting ends on November 16, 2016, 11:59 p.m PT.

    We will be randomly selecting two participants from the entries to each receive a Sea Otter Encounter for two, where you will have an up-close and memorable interaction with our rescued sea otters. 

    The announcement will be made on @vanaqua on November 17, 2016 so be sure to follow along. In the meantime, you may visit the pups at our sea otter habitat or watch them grow and interact on our live webcam.

    Click on Terms & Conditions for more details, and get voting!

    These two rescued sea otter pups have been transferred to Vancouver Aquarium Marine Science Centre to receive long-term care, following months of rehabilitation at the Alaska SeaLife Center in Seward, AK. The male pup, now almost nine months old, was admitted on February 11, 2016 after being found by a member of the public in Kachemak Bay, AK. A female pup, approximately eight months old, was spotted by the U.S. Coast Guard and washed shore on Homer Spit near Homer, AK. She was admitted on March 31, 2016.

    Both pups were deemed non-releasable by U.S. Fish and Wildlife Services as the pups were very young when they were rescued and didn’t have sufficient maternal care to learn the necessary survival skills. Vancouver Aquarium Marine Science Centre was asked to provide a long-term home for the two — they arrived on November 1, 2016.

    Now weighing in at a healthy 12 kilograms, the male sea otter pup has been maintaining a steady diet, eating about 2.5 kilograms daily of clams, capelin and squid. At 10.9 kilograms, the female otter eats about 2.0 kilograms of the same seafood mix.  

    Vancouver Aquarium is one of North America’s leading facilities in sea otter care. The rescued pups will join the Aquarium’s four other rescued sea otters. Elfin, a 15-year-old male, Tanu, 12-year-old female and Katmai, a 4-year-old female were also rescued in Alaska and rehabilitated at the Alaska SeaLife Centre. Pup Rialto, who continues his rehabilitation with the Aquarium's marine mammal care team behind the scenes, was rescued from Rialto Beach in Washington on August 1, 2016, and cared for at the Seattle Aquarium before being transferred to Vancouver for long-term care on September 20, 2016. 

    Initially the two rescue pups from Alaska will be located together in the Finning Pool, one of the Aquarium’s two sea otter habitats, before being introduced through periodic interactions to the other sea otters, including Rialto.

    Sea otters face a number of challenges in the wild. During its first six months a sea otter pup is highly dependent on its mother for food and, without her, is unable to survive. Much of the mother’s energy is dedicated to the pup and, as a result, her health may decline over the feeding period. Female sea otters give birth every year so if she determines that she has a better chance of rearing a pup the following year, due to environmental factors or availability of prey, then she may abandon the pup before it’s weaned. In adult life, sea otters continue to face numerous threats including disease, oil spills, predation, interactions with fisheries and overharvest.

    Ninety per cent of the world’s sea otters live in Alaska’s coastal waters. Within the state of Alaska, the Southeast and Southcentral stocks are stable or are continuing to increase. The Southwestern stock is listed as threatened under the Endangered Species Act (ESA) after experiencing a sharp population decline over the last two decades, attributed to an increase in predation from transient killer whales.

    Vancouver Aquarium visitors can get to know the pups and hear more about their stories at regular Sea Otter Talks. A live webcam will also stream video of the otters as they explore their new habitat.


    ELIGIBILITY: This contest (the “Contest”) is open only to residents of Canada (excluding Quebec), who are 8 years of age or older at time of entry. Employees of the Vancouver Aquarium ("Sponsor"), and the immediate family members and/or those living in the same household as such person, are not eligible. All federal, provincial and local laws and regulations apply.

    HERE'S HOW IT WORKS: Visit during the Entry Period defined below. Six names have been selected as options for the sea otter pups. Simply click on your favourite name to vote for it and enter the necessary personal details (first and last name, birth date, city of residence, email) to enter. On November 17, 2016 the two chosen names will be announced. The names of two (2) entrants will also be randomly drawn from all entries to win a Sea Otter Encounter for the winner and a guest at the Vancouver Aquarium in Vancouver, B.C. Limit to two votes i.e. two contest entries per day.

    A Sea Otter Encounter will include a tour of the food preparation area, a behind-the-scenes visit of the sea otters habitat and an opportunity to feed the sea otters. Winners will not be permitted to handle the animals.

    PARENTAL CONSENT: All entrants who are nineteen (19) years of age or younger must submit a signed Parental Consent Form if their name is drawn as a winner.


    ENTRY PERIOD BEGINS – November 2, 2016, 10:00 a.m. PT

    ENTRY PERIOD ENDS – November 16, 2016, 11:59 p.m. PT


    Only entrants who enter during the Entry Period, will be eligible to win. Any entry that fails to meet the submission criteria (e.g. age minimum) will not be entered into the Contest and any entries may be removed at any time at Sponsor's sole discretion.

    This contest is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with, Facebook, Twitter or Hootsuite. Hootsuite’s Privacy Policy can be viewed here. You understand that you are providing your information to Sponsor and not to these organizations. The personal information you provide will only be used for the purposes of contest administration and may be used for promotion of the contest as we share select photos on social media and onsite. The Vancouver Aquarium Privacy Policy can be viewed here.


    Two winners will each receive one (1) Sea Otter Encounter for the winner and his/her guest at the Vancouver Aquarium. Winners must be 8 years old or above. An adult must accompany children age 8-12 years. If a winner is unable to claim their prize, they can elect to receive an equivalent gift encounter instead. A gift encounter can be given to any recipient of their choosing. Prize consists only of elements listed above and does not include transportation to/from Vancouver, accommodation or any other travel- related or other expenses. Dates and time for the Sea Otter Encounter will be determined by the Vancouver Aquarium.


    Entries are to be made at during the Entry Period. Six names have been selected as options for the sea otter pups. Entrants are to click on their favourite name to vote for it and enter the necessary personal details (first and last name, birth date, city of residence, email) to enter. They can then return to the site to vote a second time on the same day. Only eligible entrants will be entered into the Contest.

    BEFORE BEING DECLARED A WINNER, the selected entrant (or their parent/legal guardian if selected entrant is under the age of nineteen [19] years) must sign and return within ten (10) business days of notification a declaration and release form prepared by the Sponsor which, among other things: (i) confirms compliance with these Rules and acceptance of the Prize as awarded; and (ii) agrees to release the Sponsor against any and all claims, damages, liabilities, costs, and expenses arising from any liability in connection with this Contest, the selected entrant's participation therein and/or the awarding and use/misuse of the Prize or any portion thereof; (iii) agrees to the publication, reproduction and/or other use of his/her Entry, name, address, voice, statements about the Contest and/or photograph or other likeness without further notice or compensation, in any publicity or advertisement carried out by the Sponsor in any manner whatsoever, including print, broadcast or the Internet.

    If a selected entrant: (i) cannot be contacted by email within two (2) attempts or four (4) business days of the selection date, or there is a return of any notification as undeliverable; or (ii) fails to return the properly executed Contest documents within the specified time; then he/she will be disqualified and will forfeit his/her opportunity to be a winner (and to receive the Prize) and the Sponsor reserves the right, in its sole discretion, to name another winner.

    PRIZE CONDITIONS: Return of any prize/prize notification as undeliverable will result in disqualification and an alternate will be selected. All income taxes, if any, are the sole responsibility of prize-winners. Sponsor reserves the right to substitute any prize for one of equal or greater value. Acceptance of prize constitutes permission to the Sponsor use winner's name, voice and/or likeness for purposes of advertising and trade without further compensation, unless prohibited by law. By participating in this contest, entrants (or their parent/legal guardians of selected entrants under the age of nineteen [19] years) agree to be bound by these Official Rules and the decisions of the judges.

    By accepting a prize, each winner (or their parent/legal guardian if selected entrant is under the age of nineteen [19] years) agrees to hold the Sponsor harmless against any and all claims and liability arising out of use of prize. Winners assume all liability for any injury or damage caused, or claimed to be caused by participation in this contest or use or redemption of any prize. Sponsor not responsible for typographical or other error in the printing of the offer, administration of the contest or in the announcement of the prize. In the event there is a discrepancy or inconsistency between disclosures or other statements contained in any contest materials and the terms and conditions of the Official Rules, the Official Rules shall prevail, govern and control.

    GENERAL RULES: The Contest may be cancelled, modified, terminated by the Sponsor. Proof of submission is not proof of receipt. Sponsor not responsible for incomplete, lost, late, damaged, illegible or misdirected mail/e-mail or for any technical problems, malfunctions of any telephone lines, computer systems, servers, providers, hardware/software, lost or unavailable network connections or failed, incomplete, garbled or delayed computer transmission or any combination thereof. Sponsor not responsible for any damage to any participant's computer system/software related to or resulting from participation or downloading any materials in this contest.


    The Sponsor may contact you solely for purposes related to the administration of the Contest. Your personal information will not be sold or given to third parties.  Please see our privacy policy at



    If an entrant submits more than the two entries per day, and/or if the Sponsor suspects that an entrant attempted to obtain additional entries by using multiple email addresses, identities or any other method, all entries submitted by the entrant will be declared null and void. Any suspected use of robotic, automatic, programmed, or the like methods of participation will void all such submissions by such methods. The Contest may be cancelled, modified, terminated or suspended if infected by computer virus, bugs, tampering, unauthorized intervention, fraud, technical failures or any other causes outside control of Sponsor which impairs or affects the administration, security, fairness, integrity, or proper conduct of the Contest. Sponsor reserves the right at its sole discretion to disqualify any individual who tampers with any entry process and to cancel, modify, terminate or suspend any associated Entries. In the event of termination, a notice will be posted on and a random draw may be held from all eligible entries received prior to the time of termination. Sponsor is the Vancouver Aquarium at 845 Avison Way, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, V6G 3E2.




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