New England Aquarium welcomes sea lion pup

July 13, 2017 GMT

Boston’s newest favorite son who’ll soon be making a big splash is a newborn sea lion pup named Ron.

Ron, the first offspring of the New England Aquarium’s 5-year-old rescue sea lion Tipper, was born one week ago, but won’t be ready to greet his public until fall.

“Right now, he is building his muscles to hold his head up, stand upright on all flippers, and walk in a coordinated manner. Every day, he is stronger and more coordinated,” said Kathy Streeter of the aquarium’s New Balance Foundation Marine Mammal Center.

The bouncing baby boy was named in honor of the late Ron Schusterman, a pioneering marine mammal scientist Streeter worked with on sea lion research at the University of California in Santa Cruz.

Ron is just now learning from his mom how to get in and out of a pool and the finer points of swimming.

“We don’t expect Ron to be able to swim on his own until he is a few weeks old, at the earliest,” Streeter said.

She said Tipper has also been teaching her too-cute tot how to vocalize with his mom and touch noses. Tipper, she said, warns Ron when he’s about to fall in the pool versus when it’s time for a supervised swim lesson.

Tipper joined the aquarium family in February, having been found starving on a California beach in 2013. She was cared for my marine experts in Los Angeles and New Jersey before settling in Boston.