Aniak’s Pup Has Arrived!

Seattle Aquarium welcomes the healthy birth of a sea otter

The Seattle Aquarium announced today the birth of a new sea otter pup at its facility on Pier 59 in Seattle. The young otter was born today just before 5:00AM to the mother otter Aniak—who herself was born at Seattle Aquarium in 2002.

“We are so excited to welcome this new creature into the Aquarium family,” said Traci Belting curator of mammals and birds. “We’ll be observing the mother and pup round the clock to evaluate the health of each in the days ahead.”

Because sea otter pups stay so close to their mothers in the days after birth and because otter fur is so thick, Aquarium staffers do not yet know whether the pup is a male or a female. Close monitoring of mother and pup by an “otter watcher” team will continue for at least four weeks.

As a precaution, Adaa, the otter’s father, has been temporarily moved to the Oregon Zoo in Portland to allow Aniak and her pup to bond. He will return to the Seattle Aquarium in the near future.

The as-yet-unnamed otter is the second born to Aniak, and the latest in a line of sea otters born at the Aquarium. The Seattle Aquarium became the first institution in the world to raise the animals from conception to adulthood in 1979 with the birth of Tichuk. There have been a total of 10 sea otter births at the Aquarium, and eight of those pups lived to adulthood.

In recent years, the Seattle Aquarium, in collaboration with the Association of Zoos and Aquariums and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, had suspended captive breeding to make room at its facility for beached and stranded sea otter pups. During the past several years, Aquarium biologists have monitored Aniak’s reproductive hormones and were surprised to discover her pregnancy late last summer.


View pictures of Aniak with her new pup and receive updates!

Come visit Aniak and her new pup at the Aquarium!

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25 Responses to Aniak’s Pup Has Arrived!

  1. kristina bartleson says:

    I’ve been checking multiple times/day and am so relieved to hear of the pup! Congrats to all involved.

  2. Ben Allbaugh says:

    Our Cub Scout group was at the aquarium when the baby otter was born… We looked up some Chinook words for name possibilities. Justin(6) & Dante(8) choose ‘mamook tumtum’ means surprise or wonder. I like ‘hyas huloima’ for mystery. And my wife, Sarah, liked ‘ikta halonanitch’ meaning something unforeseen. Can’t wait to see the pics on the website.

    • revdr joan bgosh says:

      congratulations on the new baby otter well done ,i am so pleased all is well with aniak and her baby my daughter ,is haveing fun being an volunteer on otter watch and i am haveing fun thinking of names for it i have an whole page

  3. Cara says:

    I can’t wait to go and see the new pup!

  4. Victortini says:

    Awww. So precious! Please PLEEEEEZE name it Oshawott!!! Pretty please.

  5. cassia says:

    the pup’s and my bday are very close! this is the best news since my cat passed away last June. i had briefly volunteered at the seattle aquarium and sea otters are one of my favorite animals! we will visit the pup soon.

  6. Judy Ness says:

    We want to make a donation for the care of Aniak’s new pup. How do we do it?

  7. Shawn and Grace says:

    Welcome pup! Thank you Aniak and Aquarium staff for making this happen. I guess we need to thank Adaa and Grandma too. The timing is bitter-sweet, a little odd too (because of Al) but It’s still great news!

  8. Grammar Grouch says:

    There is an apostrophe missing from the title.

  9. Dale Phillips says:

    I heard about Aniak’s new pup and how adorable it is from my stepdaughter who lives in Seattle. We don’t see many sea otters in Iowa so I had to get online and go to your website to see it. Wish there were a close-up! I am very active in environmental causes and will gladly donate to the aquarium in honor of the new pup.

  10. Mary Buffon says:

    What a cutie….I looked up some names……Abja – “Born in Water”…..Aalia – “Excellent”…Ori – “Charitable King”….Barun – “Lord of the Sea”

  11. Mary Buffon says:

    I found another name since its a girl……..Aasha – means “hope”

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  14. Bill Cromwell says:

    I think a good name for the female otter pup would be “Urchin.”

  15. hannah bennett says:

    i think that the name for the pup should be Hope, or Eskimo. i saw her, she is sooooo cute!!!

  16. michele says:

    I am so happy to hear the new pup is here safely. What beautiful photographs of mother and pup. I like the name “Peace” or in it’s true Native American name.

  17. michele says:

    Why were these 5 names picked? The real meaning of Sequim is not “still waters” but “good hunting grounds” now why would we want to name the pup that? please research harder on the true meanings of the names and let the people know so they can make a better choice! Why would we pick Japanese or Chinese names for an American Northwest mammal. In a nurturing environment the Otter is sensitive, sympathetic, courageous. The name “Elwha” is closest to the Great Northwest family. We have the Elwha river and the Elwha Dam. The name Elwha was named by the Native Indians in the Penninsula. The true meaning of the name Elway is hard to locate. Some think it means “Elk” and some think it was named from the water. Either are closest to the meaning and orgin of true home and character. The pups mother, Aniak’s name derived from The Great Northwest, Alaska and it’s culture. It would be nice that both their names had the same culture, and meanings close to each other.

  18. Dallas edmonds says:

    My little sister wants it named anaya(pronounced ann-ya) and I think it should be named Annie:)

  19. zalazaza says:

    How cute!
    To me, they are the most beautiful creatures on earth ^v^

  20. Monica says:

    I love otters

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