Good News Thursday: Baby seal takes up surfing, firefighters help deliver baby


Baby seal takes up surfing

Sammy the seal hops from board to board with California surfers. The seal pup visited the surfers for days, and marine experts were unsure why. (CNN Newsource, Capitol Records)

A harbor seal pup joined surfers off the coast of San Diego by climbing up onto their surf boards to catch some waves.

Nicknamed “Sammy” after children’s book “Sammy the Seal,” the pup came to Pacific Beach day after day and hopped from board to board. The surfers enjoyed having a new friend, and many let Sammy climb up on their board with them.

Marine experts were unsure what motivated Sammy, as harbor seals are usually standoff-ish. According to SeaWorld’s Jeni Smith, the behavior is not normal. Smith said her first thought was that perhaps there were sharks in the water, encouraging Sammy to seek refuge on the surfboards. The SeaWorld rescue team checked on the seal and found him healthy.

“Such a magical moment of connection with nature,” said surfer Jenny Kim, who surfed with Sammy. “A moment of pure happiness for me.”

Observers found the seal inspiring. Ed Hartel, who shot drone footage of the seal, said that Sammy was a light in a time of darkness.

Firefighters help deliver baby

Mom Jackie Cerna and baby James smile with the firefighters who assisted with the baby’s birth. Cerna went to the fire station after knowing she wouldn’t make it to the hospital in time to give birth. (CNN Newsource, Hialeah Fire Department)

When a Florida woman went into labor and realized she wouldn’t make it to the birthing center, local firefighters stepped in to save the day.

Jackie Cerna, 34, was on her way to the birthing center with her husband after having constant contractions. She knew her baby was coming too fast to make it there, so the couple turned to go to the nearby local fire station instead. When they arrived at the Hialeah Fire Station Number 9, Cerna’s husband started yelling at the firefighters to come.

“They came running,” Jackie said.

The firefighters helped Jackie give birth and told her she had a healthy baby.

“I’m forever grateful to them … they are superheroes and definitely like forever stay in contact with those with those gentlemen,” Jackie said.

Baby horse finds foster mare thanks to social media

Foal Gia enjoys scratches from her owner. Gia’s mother died shortly after she was born, but her owner was able to find a foster mare to care for the baby. (CNN Newsource, WHSV)

When Virginia resident Paula Hursey’s horse died shortly after giving birth, she needed to find a foster mom for the now orphaned baby. After asking for help on social media, Hursey was able to find a match to take care of the foal, named Gia.

Another horse owner, Tracy Kiefer, offered her mare Beauty to take care of Hursey’s foal for free. Hursey drove an hour to pick up Beauty and hoped that it would be a good fit. Beauty has had her own foals and was able to step in to take care of baby Gia.

“I just wanted Beauty to be happy, whether it would be taking care of another baby or standing in the field, and being down there watching her with the baby I knew she was happy,” Kiefer said.

Hursey said she was grateful that someone was willing to take a chance to help the foal, even though Kiefer and Hursey had never met before she went to pick up the mare. Now Gia is able to receive the nourishment and care a baby horse needs.

Kiefer said she hopes Beauty can continue to be a foster mare to other baby horses in the future.

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