POINT REYES NATIONAL SEASHORE, Calif. - Three sea lions - including one nicknamed Hoppie, who was rescued from an almond orchard in Modesto - have been released back into the wild.
The Marine Mammal Center in Sausalito, California, invited reporters to witness the animals being set free just after noon Tuesday near Chimney Rock at Point Reyes National Seashore.
Hoppie, who spent about five weeks receiving much-need nourishment and recovering from sores at the mammal center, drew media attention last month when workers discovered him hopping through Mape's Ranch orchard, a mile from the San Joaquin River.
One of the other sea lions released Tuesday had been caught in a fishing net in Monterey County and wounded in the neck. That sea lion, Shammyrock, was found near Breakwater Cove in March.
The other was rescued from Grover Beach in San Luis Obispo County after suffering from acid toxicity.