Rescued Seal Tom Sawyer Returns To The Ocean


A juvenile grey seal, Tom Sawyer, has been released into the ocean at Assateague State Park.

The seal was rehabilitated at the National Aquarium Animal Care and Rescue Center, after being rescued from a Delaware beach in April, in coordination with the Marine Education Research and Rehabilitation Institute. Tom Sawyer was found to be suffering from an eye ulcer and injuries to his flipper and mouth.

Teams were able to clear the seal’s lungworm infection, and his eye and flipper fully healed. The seal was found to have a symphosis fracture, located in the jaw area. Tom Sawyer was sedated and received a temporary acrylic bridge to stabilize the lower jaw.

“Tom Sawyer was our third seal patient of the 2021 season and he certainly had his challenges,” National Aquarium’s Director of Animal Rescue Jennifer Dittmar said. “Much of Tom’s rehabilitation required patience, as the process to treat lungworms can take multiple courses of medication. As we say farewell to Tom, my team and I are currently preparing for the next rescue season’s cast of characters.”