LIFESTYLE

Orphaned sea lions rescued off the coast of Peru capital

A group of young sea lions are let out of pet carriers before release into their natural habitat, in the coastal waters of the Palomino Islands, Peru, Friday, Oct. 14, 2016. Peru's Organization for Research and Conservation of Aquatic Animals, or ORCA, brought nine sea lions back to health and released them into the sea near a reserve where hundreds of others sea lions live on Friday. Each sea lion is approximately seven months old and had been orphaned on the coast of Lima. (AP Photo/Martin Mejia)

A group of young sea lions are let out of pet carriers before release into their natural habitat, in the coastal waters of the Palomino Islands, Peru, Friday, Oct. 14, 2016. Peru's Organization for Research and Conservation of Aquatic Animals, or ORCA, brought nine sea lions back to health and released them into the sea near a reserve where hundreds of others sea lions live on Friday. Each sea lion is approximately seven months old and had been orphaned on the coast of Lima. (AP Photo/Martin Mejia)  (Copyright 2016 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.)

Nine orphaned sea lions have a new home in Peru.

A Peruvian environmental organization nursed the nine to health and returned them to the sea on Friday at the Palomino Islands, a few miles (kilometers) off the coast of Callao, the country's main port.

The sea lions slid out of their dog-type pet carriers and dove over the side of the boat near a small island crowded with others of their species.

Carlos Yaipen heads the Organization for Research and Conservation of Aquatic Animals that cared for the nine for several months and freed them.

He says the animals lost their mothers off the coast. He says the sea lions' environment is being harmed by overfishing, making the animals more vulnerable.

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