• Kyodo


Tama-chan, a stray seal who has been hanging around the banks of the Katabira River, was registered Wednesday as a resident of Nishi Ward, local officials said.

The name on the seal’s resident registry card is Tamao Nishi, the sex is listed as male and the birth date says “unknown.”

The address is registered as the bank of the Katabira River and the location of its family registration is the Bering Sea.

The wayward seal was first sighted in August in the Tama River, which separates Tokyo and Kanagawa Prefecture, prompting people to call it Tama-chan. It was later seen in the Tsurumi River and later in the Katabira River in Kanagawa Prefecture in September.

Kindergarten students in the ward filed an application to serve as a “proxy” for the seal. The seal’s former address is listed as “from the Tama River to the Tsurumi River.”

The ward said the action comes in response to calls from many residents who say the seal “is more or less like a fellow ward resident.”

The seal’s registry card as well as an application for “moving in” is different from authentic ones, the ward office said, adding that the seal is not counted as part of the ward’s population.

In a time of both misinformation and too much information, quality journalism is more crucial than ever.
By subscribing, you can help us get the story right.