Chang Moo Kwan: The Source

Marine Mammal Rehabilitation Center

Chang Moo Kwan Events

San Pedro In Photos

Chang Moo Kwan Events

San Pedro In Photos


San Pedro works its magic here...

San Pedro, I love to think, is a city born of the water, by the water, and for the water. We are surrounded--with a little Google-Earthing--on three sides by water. We exist here in San Pedro because our forefathers harvested from the sea to feed a growing costal community...that be Los Angeles and environs. Life came from the ocean; somehow I think we will all end up back there. We should be honored whales pass by close to our shores, dolphins often swim and surf at Cabrillo Beach, and seals still choose our coast for sun and safety.

Every one of the friends, who have come to visit me in San Pedro, gets a tour. The Marine Mammal Refuge is one of the stops. I explain that between the Point Vicente Whale Interpretive Center and the Marine Mammal Care Facility at Fort MacArthur, the Palos Verdes Peninsula is certainly pulling its own in bringing great karma from the sea. Our oceanic neighbors, marine mammals, are lessons on coexisting and respecting the environmental matrix simply basking in profundity. Do we get the point?

The seals and whales and dolphins--hope I don't shatter anyone's paradigm--don't exists all around us because of us, for us, or in spite of us...they grace us because of the heath of their universe, their ecosystem. Not fish; no sea mammals. Sea mammals don't stick around if the environment is messed up unless they are stuck. Unlike humans, they don't need to, and move on to a place that is not all messed up.

In my view we are very lucky to have seals to take care of, and Marine Mammal Care Facility at Fort MacArthur should be commended for their diligence and vigilance regarding seals. When visitors from other areas join me here, they are always amazed at the fact such a facility exists. This is a wonderful place where staff and volunteers join hands in aiding seals, sick, injured or starving, and revive and the release them. That last part is really important. The goal at the Marine Mammal Care Facility is to get the seals back on their flippers and back into the deep blue.

Care is taken with each seal to prepare it for the wild but not immerse in humanity. My son, Ian, and I have visited here since he was in a stroller. We have frequently seen caregivers separate themselves for a seal by a plywood board. This is not an act of coolness, but benevolence. The seal benefits from the meal, medicine, and conditional pampering, until it is ready to be again being returned to its natural habitat; systematic and safe. This is not the TV version, this is survival.

I would think, every single animal in here would have otherwise perished if left alone. This year has been very busy, climate change, scarcity of food, or whatever the case, thousands of seal are beaching themselves. It appears many seals are either self-weaning prematurely or left to fend for themselves too maybe by a starving parent; orphaned too soon, in either case.

Marine Mammal Care Facility reaches out, to give back in so many ways. Just taking Ian here at such a young age, and returning so many times throughout his life, demonstrated to him "man at one with nature" not against it...long term, continual care for seals, but symbolically what they represent. Where there are seals there is life and active vitality.

I live less than a few hundred yards as a crow flies from Fort Macarthur and the Mammal center. Sometimes on a warm, calm summer night I can hear the seals at the Mammal Center barking out a singular staccato into the night: over and over and over. On a few occasions I have heard faint in the distance an answer back from the sea. There is something to we don't quite get or refuse to acknowledge. Like messages in a dream that come from our subconscious, there is something known that we do not...

Get Directions To:
3601 Gaffey Rd
San Pedro CA 90731