Thousands of starving young sea lions have been washing up on the beaches of California in recent months.

They are in bad shape - weak, dehydrated, and near death.

Almost 1,000 have been rescued in the past three months alone, and scientists say as many as 45 percent of the pups have died.

As rescuers try to save the pups, scientists are trying to get to the bottom of why so many are in trouble.

Some experts say that their food sources out at sea - sardines, mackerel and other fish - have virtually disappeared.

Al Jazeera's Rob Reynolds reports from Playa del Rey in California.

Source: Al Jazeera