At this point in your life, there's a good chance you've seen more than enough YouTube videos to know you should never turn your back on a wild animal, especially a carnivorous predator. If not, then look no further than a new viral video showing the terrifying moment when a huge sea lion attacked a young girl and dragged her underwater.
The intense footage was captured by college student Michael Fujiwara, who was standing on a dock at the Steveston Fisherman's Wharf in Richmond, British Columbia. As you can see in the video (shown above), a small group of people watch the flabby mammal as it bobs around in the water for scraps of bread. But when a little girl crouches down to get a better look at the sea lion, it lunges at her face for a closer look of its own, leading to nervous laugher among the onlookers. While this would have been a great time to back away from the wild animal, the little girl sits and turns her back to it. The sea lion promptly lunges again and drags her into the water.
Thankfully, the girl was rescued by a man (presumably a family member), who jumped into the water and pulled her to safety. Fujiwara told CBC News that nobody appeared to be injured in the attack, but said "[the girl and her family] were pretty shaken up." The report also includes comments from a wildlife expert, who was not at all surprised by the seal lion's behavior because it may have mistook a pattern on the girl's dress for food. Bob Baziuk, general manager of the Steveston Harbour Authority, said officials have been warning visitors not to feed the animals for years now, according to a report by CNN.
"It's not Sea World, it's a place where you buy fish," he said. "If you feed the animals like this you're asking for trouble."
All said, you may want to keep that in mind the next time you want to get close for a vacation photo or let your kids get close.