Video of fisherman throwing explosive at sea lions prompts debate on social media

(FOX News) -- A controversial video of a fisherman throwing a small explosive at a raft of sea lions in British Columbia has ignited a heated debated on social media -- and prompted an investigation by the Canadian Department of Fisheries and Oceans (DFO).

In the video posted to Facebook, fisherman Allan Marsden is seen lighting a small explosive, referred to as a bear banger and used to ward off aggressive wildlife, and throwing it at the sea lions that have gathered near the boat.

After the explosive detonates, the alarmed sea lions are seen diving under the surface while someone laughs behind the camera.

The video was shared by several Facebook pages -- including the Pacific Balance Pinniped Society, which has been calling to substantially cull the growing population of seals and sea lions off the B.C. coast.